Tag: <span>State Champions (Massillon)</span>


1970: Massillon 28, Canton McKinley 0

Tigers claw Bulldogs


A relic stands as a tribute to the dedication and determination of a group of young men in whom Coach Bob Commings has placed faith since the spring of 1969.

Of course, the relic is the “Victory Bell” – a treasured locomotive bell which goes to the winner of the Massillon-Canton McKinley football game.
* * *
COMMINGS HAS insisted this year’s edition of the Tigers – his second – are “quality kids”.

They proved beyond a doubt last Saturday before 22,500 rain soaked football buffs at Tiger stadium they are deserving of Ohio’s No. 1 ranking in the wire services’ Class AAA poll.

It is just a matter of hours before they learn if Saturday’s efforts were enough to maintain the top ranking.

Program Cover

Saturday’s 28-0 conquest of the Bulldogs climaxed a comeback which Commings began here in 1969 with a 7-2-1 club – a team from which many of this year’s Tigers remembered the heart-breaking 14-7 loss to McKinley.

Perfect is perhaps the best adjective to describe the Tigers’ play Saturday – and all season long as the ’70 Washington high gridders provided Massillon football buffs with their 16th unbeaten and untied team – the first since 1965. McKinley ended 8-1-1.

It was almost unbelievable of the Orange and Black’s ability to execute to perfection in the mud and bone-chilling rain Saturday.
* * *
RIB-ROCKING defensive play resulted in the recovery of two Bulldog bobbles and the theft of a McKinley aerial.

Massillon’s defensive unit allowed the Cantonians but a single stick-mover in the first half and just nine for the game.

Because of the efforts of the defensive unit – better known as the “Attack Pack” – McKinley was forced to the air 14 times. On the other hand, Massillon passed just twice.

Here’s the Tigers vs. McKinley

Massillon gained 258 yards rushing. Tailback Mike Mauger climaxed a brilliant s
eason – his last – with 137 yards in 27 tries. He scored on a pair of four-yard runs and added a bonus run.

Senior Denny Franklin, the all-around quarterback, romped 37 yards for the Tigers’ third six-pointer with the help of a perfect fake by Mauger and a key block by backup tight end Mike McGuire, a junior.
Mauger drove into the line over left tackle. The Pups bought the fake and Franklin sailed around left end as McGuire had cut down the last Bulldog who had the only chance to stop the elusive signal-caller.
* * *
MASSILLON GOT the game’s first break when Larry Harper, the senior wingback established a Massillon-McKinley game record with a 94-yard return of the opening kickoff. Mark McDew set the old standard when he raced 91 yards with the second half kickoff to help the Tigers to a 20-15 win in 1967 – the last time Massillon beat the Bulldogs until Saturday.

Willie Spencer, also playing his last game as a Tiger, climaxed the defense’s outstanding play when he picked off a Jimmy Vance pass and raced 42 yards to the four. His theft set up Mauger’s second TD with 0:18 left.

Mauger now ranks as the third best all-time Massillon scorer, surpassing the 1937 output of 137 points by halfback-fullback Bob Glass.

Saturday’s two six-pointers and the conversion run after Harper’s TD give Mauger 152 points

Game Action 1970

for the season. His 23 TDs for 1970 ranks second on the all-time Tigers’ list behind Edwin (Dutch) Hill, who tallied 34 TDs in 1922. He now rates as the top scorer of the “Modern Tiger era” – three points better than the 1934 total posted by Heine Krier.

Execution by the line freed Mauger, Franklin, Harper and fullback Cardinal consistently.

Once, however, the Bulldogs did dig in and prohibit the Tigers from scoring. This happened after WHS owned a 16-0 lead.
* * *
MASSILLON HAD moved 66 yards and tried twice to punch the leather over from inside the one. The second attempt was a crack at right tackle by Mauger. He was stopped 0:40 before the bands took the field.

Junior middle guard Larry McLenndon looked like a fifth back in the Bulldogs’ lineup as he continuously was applying pressure.

He forced junior fullback Artis Zachary to fumble once and Cardinal fell on the leather at the Tigers’ 20 to set up the first WHS sustained drive, which extended into the second stanza.

Mauger ended the maneuver when he slashed over right tackle with 9:31 showing.

Steve Studer (55) celebrates

Key plays in the drive were a 10-yard counter over left tackle by Harper on a third and eight call, a 13-yard pass over the middle to end Steve Luke to the McKinley 36 on a third and 15 try and an 11-yard burst up the middle by Mauger on fourth and two to the visitors’ 25.
* * *
CARDINAL’S recovery of Zachary’s fumble halted McKinley’s most serious threat of the game. The threat covered 34 yards and began when Vance intercepted Franklin’s first pass attempt, which had glanced off Harper’s out-stretched hands.

Massillon drove 73 yards in nine plays to make it 22-0. The TD came 9:08 before the bell was tugged through the mud from the McKinley bench. The maneuver began when Vance twice overshot targets in an attempt to pick up 12 yards the Bulldogs needed for a first down.

Mauger carried six times for 26 yards and Harper aided with a nine-yard dart around left end. Franklin accounted for the remainder, with the TD coming on his fancy footwork. The call came on a fourth and two situation. Franklin hit Spencer for the PATs, but the Tigers were penalized for illegal procedure. Harper was stopped at the three when he tried to run it in from the eight.

McKINLEY 0 0 0 0 0
MASSILLON 8 8 0 12 28

M – Harper, 94 return of opening kickoff (Mauger run); Mauger, 4 run (Harper run); Franklin, 37 run (run failed after penalty nullified pass to Harper); Mauger, 4 run (pass failed).

Ends – Steve Luke, McGuire, Spencer, Stephan, Clary, Perry.
Tackles – Ridgley, Strobel, Weirch.
Guards – Jaskinski, Jellel, Sims, Graber, Groff, John Nussbaumer.
Centers – Studer, Gaddis.
Quarterback – Franklin.
Running backs – Mauger, Cardinal, Harper.
Defensive Backs – Pattinson, Bill Luke, Thompson, Hank Nussbaumer, Wonsick, Fletcher, Sullivan.
Middle Guard – McLenndon.

Ends – Turner, Stover.
Tackles – Randle, DeStefano, O’Brovac.
Guards – Gordon, Williams, Cook.
Centers – Clark, Hoon, Fields.
Quarterback – Vance.
Running Backs – Zachary, DeGraffenreid, Cleveland, R. Umbles, Hall, Barnett, Lewis, Kelley.
Middle Guard – Carbone.

ATTENDANCE – 22, 500

First downs, rushing 16 6
First downs, passing 0 1
First downs, penalties 1 2
Total first downs 17 9
Yards gained rushing 270 91
Yards lost rushing 12 16
Net gain rushing 258 75
Net gain passing 13 40
Total yards 271 115
Passes attempted 2 14
Passes completed 1 5
Passes intercepted by 1 1
Yardage on passes intercepted 42 5
Times kicked off 5 1
Kickoff average, yards 40.0 54.0
Kickoff returns, yards 94 40
Times punted 1 3
Punt average, yards 34.0 33.3
Punt returns, yards 6 0
Had punts blocked 0 0
Fumbles 0 2
Lost fumbled ball 0 2
Penalties 10 2
Yards penalized 96 20
Touchdowns rushing 3 0
Touchdowns passing 0 0
Touchdowns by interception 0 0
Miscellaneous 1 0
Total plays 56

Referee – Ted Humphrey.
Field Judge – Hugh Davis.
Head Linesman – Stanley Evaans.
Umpire – Robert Brown.
Back Judge – Robert Reidenbach.

TD on Starting Kickoff
Spurs Win Over Pups

Repository Sports Editor

MASSILLON – The mighty Massillon Tigers took the field in the rain and mud of Tiger Stadium here Saturday and accomplished just what they set out to do – polish off Canton McKinley’s football team and wrap up another state championship.

The Tigers exploded with a spectacular 93-yard run by fleet halfback Larry Harper to get the 75th annual schoolboy classic under way.

Then Massillon methodically ground out a 28-0 victory over the stubborn Bulldogs from McKinley.

Harper’s dash put the Tigers on top with only 14 seconds gone in the game. Not all of the 22,500 fans who watched the game were even in their seats yet. It looked like the rout many had predicted.
Virtually Clinches Title for Tigers
But McKinley and the mud combined to hold the score to a respectable 16-0 margin at the start of the final quarter.

The win virtually clinches the state title for Massillon, its first in five years and 12th since the inception of the Associated Press poll in 1947.

Although the formality of the final voting must be awaited, certainly the Tigers will remain the No. 1 team in the state, a spot they held for all but one week this season.

It will be interesting to see where McKinley finishes. The Bulldogs have trailed Massillon and second-ranked Upper Arlington (27-6 winner over Marietta, Friday) as the third-rated team the last few weeks.

McKinley finished its season with eight wins, a 7-7 tie with Niles and the loss to Massillon.

It was the 16th time Massillon has been undefeated and untied in the school’s history.

The 1970 edition of the Tigers moves into the eighth spot on the all-time list of high scoring Massillon teams with 412 points. Defensively, this year’s team is tied for 12th with 29 points allowed. McKinley was the Tigers’ sixth shutout victim.

First year coach John Brideweser of McKinley was disappointed, but not disheartened. The Bulldogs were not hanging crepe in their dressing room. No one left with his head down.

Brideweser, who had been an assistant at Massillon last year, said he felt his kids did a great job Saturday and all year long.
The McKinley well-wishers praised the team and noted the 8-1-1 record was much better than expected.

Massillon Wraps Up
State Grid Crown
Commings Crew ‘Fanstatic’

Repository Sports Writer

MASSILLON – Clang, clang, Clang-clang, clang-clang.

That old railroad bell still is ringing today in Tigertown after the top-rated Massillon Tigers whitewashed the McKinley Bulldogs 28-0 Saturday afternoon and won back the bell after two years of absence from Washington high School.

Carl “Ducky” Schroeder, Tiger tackle coach who has been at Massillon for more than 20 years, summed it up perfectly amidst the delirious post-game celebration in the locker room.

“WE CAME ALL the way back and then some,” said Schroeder, who has helped coach 12 state championship teams in his Massillon tenure and probably will have another Tuesday when the final Associated Press poll is released.

“The kids were just fantastic,” praised Massillon Coach Bob comings as he stood in his dripping wet clothes, fresh from a victory shower.

“We came back the last two years and we’re gonna dominate the state of Ohio again,” said Commings.

“I think we are here for two reasons,” said Commings. “First, I was fortunate to hire the coaches I did and second the kids deserved it because nobody has outworked us this year.”

“WE HAVE QUALITY kids at Massillon High. That’s what we preached two years ago when we first came here. We told them we had to have quality players and we have them now!”

“I think it’s really good because we won. We’re in northeastern Ohio and that’s where the state championship belongs. It’s a matter of pride for the All-American Conference.”
Tigers Were ‘Fantastic’
“It’s inconceivable to me how any kids could have worked any harder than we did. There was not one dummy on the field all season. We worked on people.”

“The people in this town have been great to me personally, last year too. If anyone deserves the state title they do. The booster club president (Wilbur Arnold, Jr.) even took two vacations to see that everything came off okay.”

“We played 96 minutes (two games, McKinley and Warren) in the mud this year,” continued the former Mahoning County detective, “and we didn’t have one fumble. That’s a tribute to our coaches since we didn’t have any blows in those games.”

“McKINLEY played their game and didn’t make any changes. We played our game and didn’t change.”

“We ran the ball well and our defense looked strong despite the condition of the field.”

“Willie Spencer (two-way end) played a heckuva game today. They all did.”

“Justice was done this year,” Commings concluded.

EMOTION RAN through the Tiger locker room after the game. Players were chanting, “We’re No. 1, We’re No. 1,” from their perches atop the lockers and nearly everywhere else. It was like putting three cans of sardines into one can.

The victory bell seldom stopped ringing.

Tiger assistant coach Nick Vrotsos said, “We’ll have a winner! We won’t have to walk in the alleys this year.” The former Tiger cage mentor looked like a proud poppa as he passed out victory cigars to fellow coaches and friends.

Tiger aide Dale Walterhouse said, “We’re claiming the best linebackers in the state. Steve Luke and Tom Cardinal can move and hit. McKinley has been claiming to have the best linebackers in the state. I guess we proved it today.”

“Luke and Cardinal have been leaders on and off the field. They’re hitters on the field and gentlemen off the field,” said Walterhouse about the Tiger co-captains.

McKinley 28-0 Loser

‘Perfect’ Ending For Massillon


MASSILLON – The Massillon Tigers gave the Bulldogs of Canton McKinley a good bit more than they bargained for when the teams clashed before 22,500 here in rain-drenched Tiger Stadium Saturday.

When wingback Larry Harper returned the opening kickoff 93 yards to score, the state’s No. 1 ranked Class AAA team was off to a 28-0 victory in the final game of the year for both teams.

Massillon, relying on the charges of tailback Mike Mauger and the fine leadership of quarterback Dennis Franklin and able to move over a slippery turf while the visiting Bulldogs could not.

The Tigers moved to their 10th victory of the season without defeat, wrested the
All-American Conference title from defending champion McKinley, ended the Bulldogs two-year domination of the traditional rivalry and rounded the series off to 40 Massillon wins, 30 triumphs for McKinley (8-1-1) and five ties in the 75th game between the two schools.

Mauger, a 6-1, 200-pound senior, set a school rushing yardage record for its “modern era” (since 1932) by carrying 27 times to gain 137 yards.

He scored twice on runs of four yards, the first time in the second period to help the Tigers to a 16-0 halftime lead and the second time when the Orange and Black seized an opportunity to score in the final 18 seconds of play.

Steve Luke

1965: Massillon 18, Canton McKinley 14

Tiger Rally Repels Bulldogs 18-14
Real Champs Fight Back!


“That’s the mark of a real champion!”

Those words might have been uttered by a Massillon football fan. They might have been pronounced by a Washington high school coach. They might have been written by this reporter.

But they weren’t. That’s why they mean so much more today to one of the most terrific bunch of boys ever to wear the famous orange and black garb of the Tigers.

Following the Bengals’ 18-14 come-from-behind victory over Canton McKinley Saturday at Fawcett stadium in Canton before a standing-room only crowd of 22,326. Jim Smith, coach at Lake high school in Hartville, uttered the words which lead off this story. He paid the supreme compliment to the Obiemen through veteran assistant Carl (Ducky) Schroeder.

Program Cover

* * * * *
THE TIGERS convinced one outsider that they deserve to wear the Ohio high school crown. And maybe they convinced more around the state. Whether they did or not cannot be known until Tuesday when the final wire service polls come out.

But the Brucemen convinced all the Tiger fans watching at Fawcett that they deserved to wear a second straight crown. Any team which can be down 14 points at half time to a fired-up, superbly coached, hard-hitting team like McKinley and come back to win -–for the third time this season—certainly deserves to be called a champion.

The other 2 times the Orange and Black turned the tide was against equally tough Steubenville and Warren teams. This trio of feats will be etched in the memories of the Tiger faithful forever.

The 1965 season truly saw a superb team effort on the part of the players. Each did his part. Each came to the fore time and again during a 10-game slate, which had more pressure-packed moments than an old-time movie serial.

The win Saturday gave Massillon an undefeated season in 10 games, 28 consecutive victories, 9 in a row over McKinley and a third straight title in the All-American high school football league. The Bengals have not lost a league contest since the circuit’s inception in 1963.

For Coach Earle Bruce it was a 43rd straight unbeaten game, counting the August all-star game. He now has a 3-1 record at Fawcett, having split 2 games there with Canton Timken while at Salem.
* * * * *
FOR THE thousands of fans who watched via television Saturday, it must have been like seeing a replay of an old movie on the late-late show for this year’s game came close to being a carbon copy of last year’s. The Tigers beat McKinley 20-14 at Tiger stadium in 1964.

This time, however, the WHS eleven started its comeback earlier, not waiting for the last quarter to roll around. Quarterback Dave Sheegog, playing in his final high school game, got his mates started with a 24-yard run-back of the second half kickoff to his 34-yard line.

The Tigers moved in for a score in 11 plays, finally getting their deadly, ground-gobbling, time-consuming offense into high gear. “Sweet Walter” Lemon, another senior, picked up 16 yards in 5 plays on the drive with Sheegog and junior Tommy James also in on the effort.

The touchdown came after a first down procedure penalty had set Massillon back to the McKinley 39. Sheegog handed to James on the trip up the middle and “the Scooter” was “Gone With the Wind.” He cut back to his left and scurried for payoff territory, arriving with 6:05 left in the third period. A fumble nullified the conversion attempt.

With almost 6 precious minutes chopped off the clock in the scoring soiree, McKinley attempted to get a drive going following the kickoff. But 3 plays later it was “TJ for the TD” again.

Bulldog quarterback Larry Haines attempted a pass with second down on his 33. James intercepted on the 40, went down the left sideline and scored with 5:14 remaining in the period. Another fumble aborted the conversion try.

The Bengals forced a punt on the next series as linebacker Paul Marks threw Haines for a 10-yard loss on third down. Sheegog ran back 31 yards with the boot to the McKinley 24. But a penalty and 2 incomplete passes halted the drive on the 24.

It looked as if McKinley were about to come charging back. Their outstanding fullback Larry Clayton went booming off right tackle for 28 yards to the Massillon 48 with Paige making a desperation tackle to save a score. Four more plays put the pigskin on the 35.

* * * * *
THEN SHEEGOG intercepted another pass on what McKinley Coach Ron Chismar called the key play of the game. Massillon then drove 76 yards in 13 plays for the winning score. Most important about this drive was that it clipped 8 minutes off the clock allowing too little time for McKinley to rebound. This was about the umpteenth time that the Tiger trademark of 1965, possession ball, had paid off. It couldn’t have come at any better time.

Lemon, Sheegog, Foster and James all had a hand in the assualt. Lemon had an 8-yard run, Sheegog a pair of 8’s and Foster an 11.

It was Foster who came up with what Bruce thought was the key play and so did all of the Tiger fans. Massillon had fourth down on the 17. Sheegog was about to be trapped on a pass-run when (name unreadable) out a low clothes line. Foster made a swan dive on the 9 and came up with the ball. Umpire Tony Pianowski immediately signaled a legal catch.

Foster blasted through the middle to the 3 and over, off left tackle, in successive plays with 2 minutes remaining. Sheegog tried to hit Paige for the conversion but Rick couldn’t hold it.

But the heart-throbs weren’t to stop. McKinley, showing the great stuff it is made of, continued to fight, moving the kickoff to the 29 after a 23-yard runback by Mathews to the 25.

With third down on the 27, Haines hit end Ed Hinton on the 39. Then Haines faded to pass, slipped and went down on the 29 with Mike (Big Boy) Sherrett on top of him.

* * * * *

THE NEXT PLAY saw Haines fade again. This time Marks picked off the fourth McKinley pass of the day, more than in any other game for the Tigers. Massillon took over on the Bulldog 46 and ran out the clock.

Unlike in the second half, McKinley was in command in the first period. Hopped up like a horse on loco weed, the Pups rammed away for 2 quick TD’s before the startled Tigers knew what had hit them and it looked as if an upset were in the making.

Half Fred Mathews was the star here. He ran the opening kickoff back 44 yards to the Massillon 48. Although there is no intent to play down a fine performance by Mathews, it has to be stated that a couple of Tiger defenders slipped in the mud just about the time they were going to haul Mathews down.

He picked up 40 more yards on the drive, the payoff coming on a 32-yard pass-run combination with Haines on the propelling end. The down was third and the time remaining 9:40. Greek-born George Fronimo booted the extra point soccer style in stocking feet.

The Tigers got a 20-yard runback to the 30 by Sheegog. But then disaster struck Sheegog, passing into the teeth of a strong wind, saw his aerial hold up short. Mathews hauled down the errant toss on the McKinley 35 after a frantic effort by Paige to bat it away and
hot-footed it to the Massillon 43 for 22 yards on another fabulous return. Eight plays later the Bulldogs had their second score and it looked like curtains for the Bengals.

* * * * *
WITH CLAYTON carrying the ball 5 times and picking up 25 yards, the Bulldogs got their next TD with 4:15 left in the welcome frame as Haines sneaked in from the one. Fronimo again connected on a conversion kick.

Mathews had a key third down pass reception for 6 yards on the Tiger 21. Clayton brought the ball to scoring distances by bursting through the center on successive plays to shake off tacklers and travel from the 21 to the 3.

Sheegog ran back the kickoff to the Massillon 34, a distance of 24 yards. But on the first play, Bill Knucklos recovered a Bengal fumble on the Massillon 37.

The Brucemen then stopped the Bulldogs’ drive on the Massillon 32 and the Pups got into Massillon territory only once the rest of the game.

The remaining seconds of the first period and all of the second were a standoff. McKinley had the ball for only 9 plays in the second canto. Massillon’s deepest penetration was to the 21 just before the half ended.

The Obiemen had 2 drives going, one for 6:30 and the other for 4:15. Junior “monster” back Ron Muhlbach intercepted a pass to start one thrust. The Tigers failed to make it once on a fourth down play and got bogged down by 3 procedure penalties the other time.

Chismar said after the game that he thought Massillon had a “great football team.” He said the difference between the 2 halves of play was Bruce’s throwing ‘junk” at the Bulldogs in the first half and playing his normal game in the second.

* * * * *
BRUCE confirmed Chismar’s statement about using a lot of odds and ends in the first half. He felt that his team did a better job of rushing the passer in the second half, which helped cut down on the effectiveness of the Bulldogs’ passing.

When asked what it was he said at half time to fire up the Tigers, Bruce replied, “Go Get them!” He added, “That old Massillon tradition of coming back is hard to beat.”

Chismar commented on his passing in the second half by saying that broken patterns were involved when James intercepted for a TD and Sheegog pilfered to start the drive for the winning score.

“They wouldn’t have scored if it hadn’t been for that,” Chismar said.

Chismar, a fine sportsman, refused to say that the absence of speedster Darryl Rippey hurt. “Elbert Bradley did a fine job of filling in,” he said. “I cannot take anything away from him.”

Tiger defensive backfield Coach John Behling explained the reason for the Bengals’ trouble in covering passes in the first quarter. “The boys couldn’t hear their cover calls,” he said.

The Lineups. . .

Ends – Paige, B. Williams, McGuire, Gallion, Griffin.
Tackles – Hartley, Neago, Petroff, Sherrett.
Guards – Rose, Whitified, Kraft, Richards, Zorger.
Centers – Marks, F. Williams, Ehmer.
Quarterbacks – Sheegog, Doolittle.
Halfbacks – Lemon, James, Muhlbach, Smith, Healy, McFadden, McLendon.
Fullbacks – Foster, Manson.

Ends – Ring, Snell, March, Hinton.
Tackles, Scott, Adamski, Rushe.
Guards – Robinson, Hall, Nucklos, Shimek.
Centers – D’Antonio, McEwen.
Quarterback – Haines.
Halfbacks – Mathews, Bradley, Johnson.
Fullbacks – Clayton, Dickerson.

Score by Quarters:
Massillon ………….. 0 0 12 6 – 18
McKinley………….. 14 0 0 0 – 14

Massillon – James 2 (39-yard run and 40-yard pass interception return);
Foster (3-yard run).
McKinley – Mathews (23-yard pass-run from Haines);
Haines (one-yard sneak).

Extra points:
McKinley – Fronimo 2 (placekicks).

Referee – George Ellis (Akron).
Umpire – Tony Pianowski (Cleveland).
Head Linesman – Branton Kirk (New Philadelphia).
Field Judge – Tom Ascani (Canton).

Attendance: 22,326

Statistics . . .

Mass. McKin.
First downs—rushing 10 7
First downs—passing 3 3
First downs—penalties 0 0
Total first downs 13 10
Yards gained rushing 165 153
Yards lost rushing 2 29
Net yards gained rushing 183 124
Net yards gained passing 43 60
Total yards gained 226 184
Passes attempted 12 11
Passes completed 4 4
Passes intercepted by 4 1
Yardage on passes intercepted 42 27
Times kicked off 4 3
Kickoff average (yards) 45.0 49
Kickoff returns (yards) 65 63
Times punted 1 1
Punt average (yards) 40.0 29
Punt returns (yards) 28 0
Had punts blocked 0 0
Fumbles 1 2
Lost fumbled ball 1 0
Penalties 5 1
Yards penalized 25 15
Touchdowns rushing 2 1
Touchdowns passing 0 1
Touchdowns by interception 1 0
Miscellaneous 0 0
Total number of plays 38 31


Dave Whitfield

1964: Massillon 20, Canton McKinley 14


State Title Assured By Comeback Victory Over McKinley, 20-14


There’s no truth to the rumor the ABC Television Network has offered the 1964 Massillon Tigers mass employment as scriptwriters.

The network well might hire the Tigers because the Ohio State high school football champions came up with as great a finish to a perfect season as any scriptwriter could dream up in his wildest imagination.

Program Cover

Trailing 14-0 going into the fourth quarter of Saturday’s game against Canton McKinley, a game that had the state championship at stake, an undefeated season hanging in the balance, 22,685 emotionally charged fans watching in Tiger stadium and un-numbered thousands viewing on television, the Tigers staged one of the greatest come-from-behind victories any Massillon team has put together to win 20-14.

The Tigers, who led the Associated Press poll voting as the No. 1 team in the state most of the season, should be officially crowned state champs when the final poll comes out Tuesday.

Outplayed by the hard hitting McKinley squad, stopped at the 1-yard line by the McKinley defense in the second quarter, stopped again at the 14 and at the 3-yard line in the 3rd quarter, Massillon for better than 2½ quarters of the game was a toothless Tiger held at bay by a pack of angry Bulldogs.

BUT THEN the unwritten script began to unfold, putting junior quarterback Dave Sheegog in the starring role. Sheegog, 5’ 10”, 170-pounds, came into the contest on offense when regular quarterback Steve Kanner went out with cramps in his leg. The Tigers started to move with Sheegog at the controls and by the time the gun went off signaling one of the greatest mob scenes ever seen in the stadium, the Tigers were on top, with a brand new set of teeth that look like they will last another year.

There were other hero’s in the Tiger comeback that will rate as one of the greatest in Massillon football. Gene Biddle replaced the injured John Muhlbach at center in the second half when Muhlbach sustained a severely bruised hip; Jim Lawrence, who was the most consistent runner for the Tigers beside Sheegog, and Walt Lemon who took some of the pressure off Sheegog in the late stages of the drive with his running.

Determination and persistence paid off for the Tigers who kept the pressure on McKinley despite the 14-point deficit and wore down the Bulldogs. McKinley played almost the entire game without Ed Jones, the roving cornerback, in the “monster” defense and Larry Haines who broke a finger in the second quarter, but managed to come back and almost bring the Bulldogs into the lead with a drive in the wining second of the ball game. In the final analysis, Massillon’s depth told the story. The Tigers had Sheegog, Biddle and Lemon.

The Bulldogs broke on top with 5:32 left in the first quarter. Massillon took the opening kickoff and on the third play from scrimmage lost the ball on a fumble by Ed Herring on the McKinley 49. With Kalogeras banging into the line for consistent yardage and Fred Mathews picking up a 12-yard gain, the bulldogs took 11plays to get to the 9 from where Haines hit Emanuel Bradley all alone in the end zone for the first score. Guard Henry Vafides kicked the extra point to make it 7-0.

Sheegog fumbled the ensuing kickoff with the Bulldog’s guard Tom Bradbury recovering on the Massillon 19. Kalogeras picked up 15 yards on 4 carries. With a third and 9, Haines hit end Nick Roman with a pass but Roman was stopped inches short of the goal. With fourth and inches, Kalogeras plowed over for the score. Vafides kicked what was to be the Bulldog’s final point.


THE TIGERS MOUNTED one offensive more in the second quarter moving from their own 46 to the McKinley 1. A penalty against McKinley for grabbing a facemask gave the Tigers the ball at the Bulldog 10 with first down. Lawrence picked up a yard up the middle, Kanner sneaked out for 3 and Hewitt went 5 to the one. With fourth and 1 Lawrence went high into the middle of the line but McKinley replused him short of the goal.

The third quarter looked no better for the Tigers despite the recovery of 2 McKinley fumbles. On the second play from scrimmage following the kickoff for the second half, Willie Hall fumbled and end Wes Goodnough recovered at the Bulldog 23. Lawrence gained 6 yards in 2 carries and Herring 3. With the ball at the 14 the Bulldogs held Lawrence on a fourth and 1 to no gain.

McKinley moved the ball to the 21 when Will Hall fumbled and Massillon’s Tom Whitifield recovered on the 19. Lawrence picked up 6 to the 13 and another 5 to the 9. After a 2-yard loss, Bobby Hewitt carried to the 4. Lawrence gained a yard and on fourth and 3 Herring was stopped at the 2 by Mathews the last man with a chance to get him.

After moving to the 11, the Bulldogs punted, Romans’ kick coming to rest at McKinley 40. There were 3 minutes and 54 seconds left in the third quarter when the Tigers started their greatest comeback in many a year.

Hewitt picked up 2 and Kanner 3. Kanner left the game and Sheegog came in. Giving a sign of things to come, Sheegog picked up 10 yards on a roll out. Hewitt picked up 4 on a second down and with third and 6 Sheegog hit end Ken Gillmore with an 8-yard pass putting the ball on the 13 with a first down coming up. Lemon squirted off for 6 yards as the quarter ended. With second and 4, Herring went to the 4 and then to the one from where Lawrence scored the first touchdown at 10:11. The extra point run by Lawrence failed and the score stood at 14-6.

McKinley couldn’t move the ball and punted to the Tiger 39 where the Tigers started a 9 play 61-yard drive. Sheegog picked up 6 yards and then hit Herring with a pass up the middle to the Bulldog 35. Lawrence gained 4 and Lemon 9 before Sheegog hit Lawrence with a pass at the 10. Lemon picked up 7 to the 3 and Lawrence 3 more.

Sheegog gained a yard to the 2 and with fourth and 1 Hewitt just made it over the goal line for the score. Sheegog tied the score at 14-all by scoring the extra points over the left side with 3:32 left in the game.


McKINLEY TOOK Paul Marks’ kick to the 12 and gained 6 yards in 3 carries. Roman punted to the Massillon 45 where Sheegog fielded the ball and returned it 33 yards to the Tiger 17.

Massillon missed connections on a pass and Sheegog gained 3 yards to the 14. With third and 7 Sheegog faked to Lawrence going into the line, kept the ball and went over right tackle. He broke into the clear only to be met by McKinley’s Ray Kinnard at the 3 and Mark Mathieu at the 1, but he just strained forward for the touchdown that put the Tigers ahead 20-14 with 54 seconds remaining.

But the ball game wasn’t over. With 48 second left on their own 24 the Bulldogs moved to the 42 on an 18-yard gain picked up by Haines. A halfback pass from Mathews to Hall picked up 8 yards and another pass from Haines to Mathews, the Bulldogs most dangerous runner, put the ball on the Tiger 24. On first down, Haines tried to hit Mathews with a pass inside the 5-yard line but Dave Whitfield deflected it and Mathews never had a chance for it with 11 seconds left. Mathews got another pass to move it to the 17. Thinking time had run out Massillon fans swarmed on the field, but with 1 second left to play, officials and 15 Massillon policemen cleared the field and McKinley tried one more play, Haines throwing the ball to center Jim Roman after being rushed by the Massillon defense.

Bedlam reigned for a long time on the field and in the Tiger locker room.

Coach Earle Bruce being congratulated in a packed office said, “I still can’t believe it.” Asked if he made any adjustments in the second half, Bruce replied, “No. Sheegog came through with flying colors. He’s a calm, cool and collected quarterback. We went with the quarterback keep off the inside belly series. Our game plan was to run the ball. We fumbled in the first half and didn’t in the second. Physically we came on in the second half.”

Asked if he thought the Tiger could come back while trailing 14-0, Bruce said. “You know, once you’ve come back, you always think about coming back,” Bruce said referring to the Niles game. “They just made mistakes in the second half. We made ours in the first half.”


FOR DON NEHLEN, who brought the Bulldogs up to contention for the state title after taking over a team that was 6-4 last year, it was a bitter defeat.

“Massillon didn’t beat us. We beat ourselves. Our mistakes beat us,” he said after the game.
“Sheegog was great for them, but Kalogeras was by far the best football player on the field. We just didn’t have quite the depth.”

Asked if his team tired late in the game, Nehlen said, “No, I don’t think so. You’d look that way too if you had your back to the wall like that. Let’s just say our daubers were down a bit.”

Nehlen was unhappy with the officiating.

“We recovered 3 of their fumbles, but we didn’t get the ball. None of the officials even looked at it,” he said.

Statistically, Massillon had the slight edge getting 215 yards to 214 for the Bulldogs and 10 first downs to McKinley’s 7. The Tigers got 158 yards rushing while McKinley had 156. In passing it was 58 for McKinley to 57 for Massillon. Massillon held the ball for 57 plays while McKinley had it for 51.

Mass. McKin.
First downs—rushing 10 7
First downs—passing 4 2
First downs—penalties 1 0
Total first downs 15 9
Yards gained rushing 173 170
Yards lost rushing 15 14
Net yards gained rushing 158 156
Net yards gained passing 57 58
Total yards gained 215 214
Passes attempted 10 7
Passes completed 5 5
Passes intercepted by 1 0
Yardage on passes intercepted 22 0
Times kicked off 4 3
Kickoff average (yards) 46.5 53.3
Kickoff returns (yards) 62 27
Times punted 1 5
Punt average (yards) 34.0 30.6
Punt returns (yards) 52 0
Had punts blocked 0 0
Fumbles 4 3
Lost fumbled ball 2 2
Penalties 0 5
Yards penalized 0 40
Touchdowns rushing 3 1
Touchdowns passing 0 1
Touchdowns by interception 0 0
Miscellaneous 0 0
Total number of plays 57 51

Ends – N. Roman, E. Bradley, Ring, Chaney.
Tackles – Scott, Miller, Carpenelli, R. Kinnard, Dodd,
Frazier, Shaheen.
Guards – Spencer, Bradbury, Vafides, Ra. Spencer.
Center – J. Roman.
Backs – Haines, Mathieu, Mathews, Hall, Rippey. E. Bradley,
Kalogeras, Dunnerstick.

Ends – Gilmore, Franklin, Paige, Goodnough, Garcia,
D. Whitfield.
Tackles – Binge, Morgan, Rambaud.
Guards – T. Whitifield, Laursel, Zorger.
Centers – Muhlbach, Biddle.
Backs – Kanner, Sheegog, Herring, Hewitt, Lawrence, Frieg,
Pribich, Manson, Lemmon, Conti, Marks, Schenkenberger.

Massillon…………. 0 0 0 20 – 20
McKinley………… 14 0 0 14 — 14

Touchdowns – McKinley: Bradley (9-yard pass from Haines); Kalogeras (1-yard run).
Massillon: Lawrence (1-yard); Hewitt (1-yard run); Sheegog (14-yard run).

Extra points – Vafides 2 (kicks); Sheegog 2 (run).

Referee – Tony Pianowski (Cleveland).
Umpire – Harold Rolf (Ironton).
Head Linesman – Joe Romano (Mansfield).
Field Judge – Russ Kemper (Cincinnati).

John Muhlbach

1961: Massillon 7, Canton McKinley 6

Tigers Beat McKinley
Bengal Team First In local History To Win 11 Games In A Season


The ballots have been cast and in their number is the 1961 Ohio high school football champion.

Which team will it be?

Massillon’s Washington high school Tigers have the best record in games won and lost – 11 straight this season. No other state power can boast that many, and the Tigers have met and conquered many of Ohio’s strongest teams.

They deserve the title.

Last week they led the Associated Press poll by 29 points, and since last week they have added an 11th triumph to their schedule a 7-6 victory over Canton McKinley Saturday, to become the first team in Massillon history to win 11 games in a season.

Program Cover #1

* * *
UNFORTUNATE the determining factor of some pollsters appears to be how close Massillon comes to losing a game, rather than by how many points the Tigers have measured some of the state’s powerhouses.

Since Saturday’s game was a close one, this could again be a factor in this week’s final voting in the AP poll which is recognized by the Ohio High School Football Coaches association as the poll to determine the state champion. The results of the poll will be officially announced Tuesday afternoon.

A gallant Canton McKinley team gave the Tigers all they could handle Saturday afternoon before 20,000 fans at Fawcett stadium Canton, and outplayed the Tigers in many departments except points.

Here the Tigers led and 50 years from now the score will still read Massillon 7, McKinley 6.

Both touchdowns were scored in the first half – Massillon going across the first time it got the ball – McKinley scoring early in the second period.

The Bengals won by a toe and a foot so to speak. The toe was that of Wil Paisley, the guy who came out of the halls to boot 16 of 17 extra point attempts from placement, including the point that beat McKinley, and the foot was the measurement of ground the Tigers refused to yield when the Bulldogs had them hanging on the goal line in the fourth quarter.

Program Cover #2

* * *
THAT GOAL LINE stand brought out the championship caliber of the Massillon team.

McKinley folk had much to be proud of even in defeat.

Their fighting Bulldog eleven, which had been made underdog by as many as 32 points, became aroused and fought the Bengals to a standstill. They had the advantage in total net yards gained from scrimmage and in first downs, and made more serious threats than the Tigers, who actually had but the one scoring opportunity.

The McKinley team by far played its best game of the season. The Bulldogs’ coach Pete Ankney, asked each boy to give a little extra measure Saturday and they all did. And for it Ankney, bitterly disappointed at having an upset victory so near his reach, never-the-less was thankful and praised his boys for it.

“We gave it everything we had,” he said in a little room off a quiet McKinley locker room.

“Our boys for their size did a Herculean job and I thought they deserved to win it. We worked hard for this game. I thought all day we would win. I was real proud of our team right down the line, offensively and defensively. Our assistants and our associates did a good job of scouting Massillon. I knew Massillon had a great team and a great staff. I want to congratulate Strang and his fine team for a great year.”

Jim Alexander (23)

* * *
AND STRANG, whose eyes were dripping too – but from tears of joy – said in a happy Massillon dressing room. “It is a tremendous feeling to know your team has set a school record of winning 11 games in a season. That was a great McKinley team we played out there today. Ankney has done a great job of bringing them along this season. Why today they could have beaten most of the teams in Ohio.”


We asked Strang why he didn’t open up more. “We were probably more conservative than we should have been,” he replied.

“But gosh, when you have two passes intercepted and you are leading by a point, you don’t like to take a chance on much ball handling. Remember from the start of the second half when we fumbled the kickoff and were downed on our own five yard line, we never had the ball where we could afford to take chances.”

Strang was particularly proud of the goal line stand of his Tiger team that thwarted McKinley in its bid for a winning fourth quarter touchdown and Ankney was still second-guessing himself hours after the game, if maybe he should have tried a field goal on fourth down instead of trying to ram a foot through the Tiger line for a touchdown.

We asked Pete if he had considered a fourth-down field goal attempt at the time. He said, “I did, and I have a thousand times in the last 20 minutes, but I thought the chances of getting that foot and a touchdown were better than trying for a field goal and three points. If the ball had only been on the five-yard line, there wouldn’t have been any question, we would have tried for a field goal – and maybe we would have won the game.

* * *
BUT ANKNEY, we are certain, made the choice that 40 out of 50 high school coaches would have made and tried for the touchdown.

Massillon fans will be talking the rest of the year about that goal line stand.

McKinley, trailing 7-6, had gained possession of the ball on its own 49-yard line when Ken Austin covered Ken Dean’s fumble, which would have given the Tigers a first down. The Bulldogs marched to a first down on the Massillon three and the Tigers dug in.

Mark Hall banged into the line for no gain. Willie Dent dented the center for a yard and a half to put the ball not much more than a foot from the goal line. Came the last big effort for both teams.

The Tigers were dug in with their toes just on the goal line when Williams came crashing forward again. Ken Ivan and Charles Whitfield met him with a thud that could be heard in the stands. Williams’ forward momentum was stopped and he coughed up the ball which was grabbed quickly by Ivan. The Bulldogs had been stopped in their tracks and the Tigers had saved the day. Three plays later they had moved the ball out nine yards for safe punting distance and as the game turned out that was it.

Both teams had difficulty moving and not much to show in the way of offense for an afternoon’s effort.

Ankney threw what amounted to a nine-man line against the Tigers all afternoon but the boys were able to drop back quickly enough to intercept the only two passes thrown by Massillon, thereby frightening the locals into clamming up. The Bulldogs jitterbugged on the defensive line and after the first quarter were fairly successful in jamming up the middle down which the local team ran most of its stuff.

* * *
AND THE TIGERS were far from sharp. They gave McKinley the ball twice on fumbles and twice on intercepted passes and they had a couple of other fumbles which though they recovered, retarded their offense.

Looking at the statistics, Canton made 11 first downs to Massillon’s 8 and gained 42 yards passing to none for the Tigers. The Bulldogs gained 135 yards rushing, two more than Massillon, but lost 22 to the Tigers seven giving the locals a net rushing advantage of 126 to Canton’s 113. But in net yards gained rushing and passing, Canton again had the advantage, 155 yards to 126 for the Tigers.

The way the game started it looked as though the Tigers might be complete masters of the day.

They kicked off to McKinley, forced the Bulldogs to punt and poorly at that, to the Canton 47.

Charlie Brown got five yards on two tries and Philpott 11 for a first on the Canton 31. Brown hit tackle for two and Philpott 11 more for a first on the 18. Ken Dean banged through for nine yards on two lugs and Jim Alexander on a sneak put the ball on the Bulldog four. Dean slammed through to the one and Alexander went over. Paisley kicked the extra point and that was Massillon’s scoring for the entire day.

The Bulldogs took the kickoff and began a drive that carried over the centerfield stripe where Charlie Brown made a one-handed pass interception to end the threat. The Tigers came back into Canton territory but a pitchout was fumbled and Hall covered for Canton on the Tiger 49, on the first play of the second period.

AUSTIN made nine yards on a keeper and Jim Patterson fumbled and covered for a first down on the 36. McKinley was penalized back to the 41 for being in motion. Austin and Williams moved it up two yards and Lou Harris fired the ball on third down to Willie Dent for a touchdown. Dent getting behind the Tiger secondary to make the catch.

McKinley elected to run with the ball and try for two points to get the edge on the Tigers. Roy Yancey was thrown before he got to the goal line and the score stood at 7-6.

And that’s were it still stood when t he game was over.

The Tigers never threatened again in the entire game. In face, they only got as close as the 49-yard line once and that was on the last series of plays when the game ended with the Bengals in possession of the ball on the McKinley 28.

Canton was in Massillon territory four times after scoring its touchdown. It had a first on the 23 late in the second period but could not get any closer. It got over the midfield stripe on an intercepted pass early in the third period but lost the ball also on an interception by Floyd Pierce on the Massillon 40.

After being stopped on the one foot line the Bulldogs made one more bid and got down to the 21 before giving up the ball on downs.

The victory was Strang’s 38th against two losses and a tie since coming to Massillon four years ago.

From all appearances the game will be the last between Massillon and Canton until 1963, because of McKinleys suspension in Ohio interscholastic competition for one year for having allegedly used undue influence in getting a family to move from Portsmouth to Canton so that two boys could play football at McKinley high. Members of the McKinley Booster club and an assistant coach were named in the accusations. Canton school officials are considering taking the suspension into court.

The Big One

Ends – Ivan, L. Ehmer, Pierce, Paisley, Garland.
Tackles – Spees, Strobel, Mercer, C. Bradley, Clendening.
Guards – Radel, Clendenin, Whitfield, Poole.
Center – Ben Bradley.
Backs – Alexander, Philpott, Schenkenberger, Dean, Brown, Blunt, Davis, Snively, Baker.

Ends – Singleterry, Parks, Barboto.
Tackles – Day, Seymour, Peterson, Campbell.
Guards – Johnson, Currence, Ghezzi, Turner, Hall.
Centers – Wood, Pope.
Backs – Harris, Fontes, Dent, Patterson, Yancey, M. Hall, F. Hall, Williams and Auston.

Massillon 7 0 0 0 7
McKinley 0 6 0 0 6

Touchdowns – Alexander (one-yard plunge),
Dent (39-yard pass from Harris).

Point after touchdown – Paisley (placekick).

Referee – Tony Pianowski.
Umpire – Jim Lymper.
Head Linesman – Jack McLain.
Field Judge – Bobbie Brown.

Mass. Can.
First downs – rushing 8 9
First downs – passing 0 2
First downs – penalties 0 0
Total first downs 8 11
Yards gained rushing 138 135
Yards lost rushing 7 22
Net yards gained rushing 129 113
Yards gained passing 0 56
Total yards gained 129 169
Passes attempted 2 12
Passes completed 0 3
Passes intercepted by 2 2
Times kicked off 2 2
Kickoff average (yards) 47.7 45
Kickoff returns (yards) 0 30
Times punted 4 1
Punt average (yards) 34.7 28
Punt return (yards) 0 17
Had punts blocked 0 1
Fumbles 4 2
Lost fumbled ball 2 0
Penalties 0 2
Yards penalized 0 10

Charlie Brown

1960: Massillon 42, Canton McKinley 0

Tigers Wait For Poll After Crushing Win
65th Game Is History As Locals Maul Pups, 42-0, Before 19,036


The ‘City of Champions’ has been assured of another championship.

Combining an awesome display of offensive power, a virtually immovable defense and an unquenchable fighting spirit which led them back from the 19-18 loss to Warren to three irreputable victories, the No. 1 ranked Washington high school Tigers ‘trapped’ Canton McKinley into its worst defeat of the 65-game football series, 42-0, before 19,096 impressed fans Saturday afternoon.

It was a sunshine filled football finale for 24 Washington high seniors who were given individual thunderous applause when Coach Leo Strang removed them from the lineup one by one, for the last time in their high school grid careers.

Program Cover

With the realization an impressive victory was necessary to cement the top ranking they have maintained during the entire 1960 season, the Massillon gridders performed their task with precision workmanship.

* * *
STARTING with the first time the Tigers took possession minutes after the start of the game, their unmistakable superiority was grossly evident. In the first six plays it had the ball, Washington high moved 76 yards, Ken Dean rolling the final 32 for the touchdown.

* * *
HEROES WERE MANY. But Art Hastings, the sure-fire all-Ohio fullback who scored four times with a scintillating display of broken field running, and Lawson White, who generaled the defensive wall, were exceptionally out-standing.

For Hastings, the afternoon was reminiscent of many evenings throughout the past two years. He concluded his final two years of varsity competition with 220 points, over 2,400 yards rushing and innumerable other marks which may withstand the assaults of future years.

* * *
THE TURNING point of the game was when Massillon kicked off.

McKinley’s top scorer Jim Patterson covered Dean’s kickoff on the 12. Three plays, then a five-yard penalty netted the Bulldogs a first down, their only one in the first half.

Marty Gugov (75)

Sirgo punted with Bob Baker fumbling it back to the 18. He then picked it up and returned to his own 24. Quarterback Dave Null picked up 25 yards, Dean seven and Hastings 12 to the Pup 32. Dean then went in behind Center George Demis and short side guard Gary Wells, broke to the west stand sideline and sprinted 32 yards into the north end zone for a 6-0 lead. Ken added the conversion but an illegal motion penalty ruled it out. Null’s pass was then incomplete for a 6-0 lead at the 5:48 mark.

Receiving the kick, McKinley failed to move. Sirgo booted out of bounds on Massillon’s 43.

The Tigers moved to the Canton 38 before a fumble with McKinley’s George Smith recovering. Again the losers failed to move. Sirgo booted again, this time to the Massillon 24.

Martin Gugov, still hobbled by the bad knee, started the TD drive with a 23-yard burst. Dean, Null and Hastings quickly complemented that run by moving to the McKinley 15 early in the second period.

* * *
HASTINGS then eluded tacklers three different times while streaking into the end zone for his first of our scores on another trap, this time through Demis and Jay B. Willey, long side guard. Hastings’ PAT attempt failed keeping the lead at 12-0.

With the Cantonians again stalling, Sirgo booted with Baker returning the ball to the 34. A clip on the 43 gave the locals first and 16 on their 28.

In six plays the Tigers had racked up TD No. 3 with Hastings barreling in from 29 yards out. Dean has chipped in 35 yards and Hastings 22 in the drive, which was slowed by a
15-yard holding call against the hosts.

A final first half scoring bid was thwarted by a holding call which set the locals back to the 24 after Null had combined with Hastings, then Charlie Brown, to the Pup nine. Hastings was tossed down on the 31 as the half came to a close. Massillon led, 18-0.

The Tigers met a similar fate at the start of the second half as they moved from their own 32 to the McKinley 18 where a fourth and eight pass from Null went astray.

A defensive holding penalty and a 14-yarder by Roland DiMickele brought the ball to the mid-field stripe, for Canton. Sirgo then had to punt with Baker ripping up the sideline while bringing the ball back to his own 49.

On the next play Hastings went through the same hole Dean used in his first period score for 51 yards and a touchdown. Charlie Brown added the two-point conversion for a 26-0 lead seven minutes into the final half.

* * *
DEAN’S next kickoff went to Patterson who fumbled with Dave Smith pouncing upon the ball on the McKinley 33. In three plays, including a 15-yard toss from Null to Larry Ehmer, the Tigers had moved to the enemy five. Hastings then bolted off his inside tackle for the score. Quarterback John Larson added the conversion on a keeper for a 34-0 advantage after three periods.

McKinley took Dean’s next kickoff and moved to the hosts’ 41 before losing the ball on downs.

Hastings picked up 24, nearly breaking away for his fifth tally. But then the Tigers faltered. Deans’ punt on a fourth down situation was blocked with Tom Wucinich recovering on the Tiger 37.

Three plays, including a completed pass, lost nine yards, Sirgo booted and Baker returned it to his 36.

Joe Heflin, playing his final game, streaked for 11 and a first down on the Bengal 47. On the next play, he ripped through the line and out-raced the defending Bulldogs for a
53-yard touchdown. Dave Smith went behind his outside tackle for the final two points of the productive 348 point season.

With Strang letting each of the seniors take his bow, the final drive by Massillon carried to the Pup six. There an incomplete pass gave Canton possession.

They picked up 21 yards in our carries as the season came to an abrupt halt.

* * *
THE TREMENDOUS pressure placed on McKinley Quarterback Tom Sirgo by White, Gary Wells, Wally Brugh, Duane Garman, Ken Herndon, Jim Houston and Ken Ivan, permitted the usually sure-fire passer only two completions, both in the flat, for a net gain of no yards. His first one picked up four but the second connection lost them all back.

* * *
IT WAS also an extremely pleasing performance for Coach Leo Strang, who with the victory, tied Chuck Mather for the most victories gained by a Washington high team in the first three years as Tiger coach. The win was No. 28 against only two defeats and a tie.

In three years against the Bulldogs and losing McKinley Coach Jim Robinson, the Tigers have turned in three straight victories. The Saturday invaders haven’t scored in their last 10 quarters after the 16-16 first half tie in Strang’s initial year at the helm, 1958.

But after 11 regular season games and two weeks with the victorious North All-Stars beginning in August, Strang was indeed ready to call it a coaching year.

“I’m glad it’s all over,” Leo disclosed with a beaming victory smile outside the Tiger dressing room. “It’s been a long one.”

Not once during the entire afternoon did the Bulldogs, owners of 320 points in 10 previous games, put together what even resembled an offensive threat. Early in the fourth period a 15-yard gain by Matt Brown, a 15-yard holding penalty against the Tigers, and several short gainers moved the Bulldogs to the Massillon 41.

That’s the most the visitors could do.

* * *
THE CLIMAXING game of the 1960 season gave the Orange and Black an impressive 10-1 slate marred only by the one-point loss to Warren. The win also kept Strang’s perfect home string in tact. In three years under Strang, the Tigers have yet to bow at Tiger stadium.

With the squad in as close to perfect health during the last three games as anytime during the season, the Tigers chewed up over a mile rushing and passing.

The 1,657 yards came on 517 yards in the Toledo Waite game, 544 against Springfield South and the 596 against ancient rival Canton McKinley.

Houston, Brugh, Wells, Garman, Gugov, Bob Herring, Joe Smith, Null, Larson , Demis, Willey, Richard Crenshaw, Ron Herbst, Virgil Bukuts, Herndon, Pete Anzalone, Don Kurzen, Theopolis Bodiford, Jim Fuchs and Chuck Royer along with Dave Smith, Hastings, White and Heflin closed out their high school football careers.

It was a pleasant finale that the boys won’t soon forget.

A Fine Finale

Ends – Bodiford, Royer, Ivan, Anzalone, Ehmer, Fuchs, Houston.
Tackles – Crenshaw, Bukuts, Brugh, Garmon, Herndon, Herbst.
Guards – White, Willey, Wells, Radel, Whitfield.
Centers – Demis, Bradley.
Backs – Null, Larson, Baker, Alexander, Hastings, J. Smith, Dean,
Snively, Schenkenberger, Kurzen, Herring, Gugov,
Heflin, D. Smith, Brown, Lash.

Ends – Beane, Singleterry, Luchitz.
Tackles – Dragomer, Agnes, Day.
Guards – turpin, Seymour, Wucinich, Thomas, Ghezzi.
Centers – Hudak, Carr.
Backs – Sirgo, Pettersoh, DiMickele, Smith, Wood, Cobb.

Massillon 6 12 16 8 42

Massillon – Dean (32, run); Hastings 4 (15, run; 29, run;
51, run; 5, run); Heflin (53, run).

Massillon – Larson (run); Brown (run); D. Smith (run).

Tigers Bulldogs
First downs – rushing 22 3
First downs – passing 2 0
First downs – penalties 0 3
Total first downs 24 6
Yards gained rushing 573 90
Yards lost rushing 22 17
Net yards gained rushing 551 73
Yards gained passing 45 0
Total yards gained 596 73
Passes attempted 6 12
Passes completed 3 2
Passes intercepted by 0 0
Times kicked off 7 1
Kickoff average (yards) 41.0 48.0
Kickoff returns (yards) 20 73
Times punted 1 8
Punt average (yards) 0 37.6
Punt return (yards) 73 0
Had punts blocked 1 0
Fumbles 2 1
Lost fumbled ball 1 1
Penalties 4 2
Yards penalized 60 30

Art Hastings

1959: Massillon 20, Canton McKinley 0

Workmanlike Tigers Make It A Perfect Year
Massillon Stouties Roast Bulldogs 20-0 In Defensive-Minded Hassle



That is as good a word as any to use in describing the superlative piece of machinery which combined to hold the “Indian sign” over the Canton McKinley Bulldogs last Saturday afternoon.

The mighty Massillon Tigers did no extraordinary things, they simply did the ordinary thing extraordinarily well as they put the Bulldogs through the meat-grinder, 20-0 before nearly 19,000 fans at sunny Fawcett stadium.

There were not twisting, 80-yard runs, no fourth-down scoring passes, no whopping, long punt or kickoff return. Just work. Much like other people perform in the mills.

The bountiful Tigers tore off the tackles and up the middle most of the afternoon as they enjoyed an early Thanksgiving Day – stuffing the Bulldogs and roasting’em well.

The Cantonians must have felt like they had eaten a mess of those contaminated cranberries that slipped by the spying crews.

Program Cover

The grind-em out offense combined with an impregnable defense proved that the Tigers could get the job done one way or the other. All season long, when the occasion demanded, they either banged inside the flanks, threw the long stroke or pulled off some
hipper-dipper. Versatility and variance were bywords.

It was this kind of a team which will go down in Washington high gridiron annals as one of the greatest.

The sweet smell of success over 10 weekends brought Tigertown its first unbeaten season since 1953, this was the sixth highest scoring club in all history, the eighth to splurge to over 400 points in a single season.
* * *
HEADMASTER LEO Strang’s merry-makers averaged six touchdowns a game, held their eminent opponents to just 46 points, only Akron Garfield scored more than one touchdown against them and the Bulldogs became the fifth foe to draw a blank in the scoring column.

Balance, depth and poise of a champion w ere the big reasons why the Tigers came through with Massillon’s 16th unbeaten and 12th perfect record team in history. They worked, worried and whaled into their job with one goal on the horizon – an unsullied record – and they got it – and they earned it.

Teamwork, as always, paid off handsomely. Everybody who had a part in this spectacular season, from Coach Strang and his aide-de-camps on down to the little people behind the scenes, deserve the heartiest compliments.

This team had a whole lot of everything.

It had a world of balance in the leather-lugging department. When tricky Art Hastings wasn’t whirling and weaving, piston legged Bill Finney was flashing downfield. And when speedy Jim Wood wasn’t on the go, that reliable junior, Martin Gugov was like Popeye’s can of spinach or the U.S. cavalry showing up in a western movie…help came when needed.

It had Joe Sparma, the hand-is-quicker-than-the-eye quarterback…he had no peer in the state. A non-worrier and team-steadier, the confident field general threw 15 touchdown passes this season to bring his career total to 32 pay off pitches.
* * *
GUGOV SCORED 88 points, Hastings chalked up 86 and Finney and Wood each checked in with 64. Hastings carried 116 times for 1,244 yards, an average of 10.7 yards per try. Finney toted 87 times for 608 yards. Wood collared 481 yards in 39 tries and Gugov was called on 50 times and picked up 480 yards.

Yep, this team had everything. It had sharp blocking, especially improved downfield blocking, with Virgil Bukuts, Jim Houston, Wendell Snodgrass, Don Appleby, and Bob Barkman as possibly the standouts. It had smart, teeth-loosing defensive play led by Gugov, Houston, Hase McKey, “Sluggo” Bednar, Frank Midure, Terry Snyder, Gary Wells, Jay B. Willey, Nick Daugenti, and Bob Oliver.

While of offense averaged 8.1 yards per play, the defense allowed the opposition just 2.8 yards per try.

We think you will agree, the Tigers had all the earmarks of a true champion.

They may not be officially crowned the state champ but in this book, and probably yours too, they are the very best in Buckeyeland.

It took some doing to wade through such formidable opposition without a loss. The orange and black knocked down, Alliance, Steubenville and Warren, when they were ranked in the top 10 and two other victims, Cleveland Benedictine and McKinley, were accorded berths in the second ten over the season.

McKinley tried to show Massillon was not unbeatable but the Tigers had too many guns in their arsenal. Thus they keep the Nickel Plate Road victory bell for a third straight year. The series record now reads Massillon 32 wins, 27 losses and five tie scores.

For two years under Strang, the Bengals arte 18-1-1. It was Leo’s second unbeaten team, his 1955 Upper Sandusky array having tifted nine straight scalps.
* * *
McKINELY HAD scored at least two touchdowns in eight of its nine previous games. (Steubenville triumphed, in the rain and mud, 15-0) but the Bulldog offense was practically nil against the Orangemen.

The host club gained 96 yards but the Tigers, led by Bednar (he waits and pounces like a burglar) and Gugov (he surely can wreck those end runs!), tossed Bulldog runners for losses amounting to 29 yards. For 35 plays the losing side made 67 yards, an average of a mere 1.9 per play.

McKinley never got off a pass. Quarterback Dave Sitzman went back three times but Massillon never gave him a chance to get rid of the ball.

The Bulldogs made only five first downs – three of them in the last quarter.

Meanwhile, the tenacious Tigers reeled off 15 first downs, made 242 yards rushing and Sparma hit on two of seven passes for 21 yards. One pass was caught out of bunds and another hit the intended receiver on the headgear.

Hastings, the driving junior, clicked off 108 yards in 17 carries. Gugov made 68 yards in 14 tries and Finney picked up 53 yards in 15 stabs.

The Tigers reached the promised-land in the second, third and fourth periods, going 75 yards in 15 plays during the second round, 59 yards in 11 plays during the third panel and 21 yards in five plays during the last chapter. The final TD came after that ferocious middle guard McKey, recovered an enemy fumble.

McKinley only once threatened and that was in the second quarter when a Massillon fumble was recovered by Fullback Wrentie Martin at the Bengal 34.

THE FUMBLE occurred on the first play of the second stanza and in the next four plays, the red and black was unable to get a first down.

Halfback Stanley Wilcoxen carried twice for six yards before Sitzman, unable to find the receiver open on a jump pass, ran and was stopped by Houston after a pickup of a yard. With fourth and three at the 27, Wilcoxen rode off the right side on a trap play but found no trap, consequently no hole, and he was grassed a yard shy of the first down.

The Tigers marched 61 yards the first time they got the ball as a 16-yard run by Hastings and a 10-yard smash by Gugov sparkled. But at the 22 they lost the ball on a fumble and they had to wait until the second period before breaking a scoreless deadlock.

After halting the Bulldogs at their own 25, the Orangemen knuckled down, Hastings, Finney, Sparma and Gugov lugging the ball goalward. Hastings inserted a 15-yard run and only a tackle from behind by Bill Babics, a fine end, kept him from going all the way. Finney got off a 10-yarder and would have scored from 14 yards out except that he was tripped up at the last second by End Frank Smith.

From the one Finney scored off right tackle as Wood made the key block. Gugov hit the same spot for the bonus points and at 2:58 in the quarter it was 8-0.

Following the score, McKinley made three yards in three plays and Sitzman was stopped after two on fourth-and-seven. Massillon still had time for a giant-sized try.

With time running out, Wood caught the Sparma pass out of bounds at the Bulldog 22 and on the last play of the half, Martin managed to knock Sparma’s pass away from Oliver.

To start the second half, the Tigers received and they promptly added another six points. This 59-yard foray highlighted a 14-yard Sparma to Wood pass and Hastings’ twisting
10-yard jaunt.

Gugov scored on a beauty from the nine. He took a pitch out to the right, got a nice block from Barkman, leaped over one would-be tackler and kept his footing to step in and hike the count to 14-0 at 6:25. Finney then was stopped a yard away from two more markers.

McKINLEY THEN had to punt and Daugenti, the boy who came here from Cleveland this year, put on a nifty return of 35 yards to the Bulldog 34. Nick fought off three defenders and Willey applied a crunching block but their efforts were wiped out because the Tigers were called for clipping.

However, they advanced 43 yards on the last eight plays of the quarter as Hastings ignited the drive by breezing for 25 yards.

But this bid was thwarted by linebacker Dan Mussulin who picked off a Sparma pass from the 20 (it was intended for sub halfback Bob Herring, but too short) and McKinley remained in contention.

An exchange of punts followed and with 8:40 remaining, the hosts got moving. After two first downs though, Sitzman, swarmed under as he tried to pass, fumbled and the ball was grabbed on the fly by McKey who churned four yards to the McKinley 21.

Finney gained eight, Gugov five in two tries and Finney came back for seven before Hastings wedging through center, made the final yard at 1:50. Gugov was stopped short on the PAT attempt but it didn’t matter, the Tigers were in.

On the ensuing kickoff, Gugov recovered what appeared to be a fumble but the ball was ruled dead. After Jimmy Robinson’s combine made a first down, Massillon cheerleaders hauled out and displayed a big sign, “State Champions!” and two plays later the 64th
Tiger-Bulldog game was history.

THE CANTONIANS defensed the Tigers pretty well but it wasn’t enough. The loss gave McKinley a record of six victories against four losses for the season.

Massillon has held the upper hand 10 times in the last 12 years and the Tigers now have shut out their top rival 13 times during the ancient series.

A Happy Ending

ENDS – McKey, Barkman, Zumbrunn, Oliver, Pierce.
TACKLES – Appleby, Bukuts, Wells, Haines.
GUARDS – Houston, Willey, Bednar, Midure, Anzalone.
CENTERS – Snodgrass, Snyder.
HALFBACKS – Finney, Wood, Gugov, Daugenti, Herring.
FULLBACKS – Hastings, Hershberger, Toles.

ENDS – Babics, Vince, Smith.
TACKLES – Agnes, Guedel, Dragomier, Blackman, Ryjowski.
GUARDS – Mussulin, Shipp, Turpin.
CENTER – Kutrieb.
HALFBACKS – Wilcoxen, Warren, Thomas.
FULLBACKS – Martin, Mathieu.

Scoring by quarters.
Massillon 0 8 6 6 20
McKinley 0 0 0 0 0

Massillon scoring:
Touchdowns – Finney (R-1); Gugov (R-9); Hastings (R-1).
Extra Points – Gugov (run).

Mass. McKin.
First downs, rushing 14 5
First downs, passing 1 0
First downs, penalties 0 0
Total first downs 15 5
Yards gained rushing 245 96
Yards lost rushing 3 29
Net yards gained rushing 242 67
Yards gained passing 21 0
Total yards gained 268 67
Passes attempted 7 0
Passes completed 2 0
Passes intercepted by 0 1
Times kicked off 4 1
Kickoff average (yards) 41.0 50.0
Kickoff returns (yards) 26 45
Times punted 1 4
Punt average (yards) 37.0 34.5
Punt returns (yards 28 0
Fumbles 3 2
Lost fumbled ball 2 1
Penalties 1 5
Yards penalized 15 25

By Lut Emery

Will the Tigers be named state champions in the Associated Press poll this week?

In our mind and in the mind of every Massillonian and for that matter most residents of Stark County, the Tigers are champs regardless of how they are voted in the poll.

Their 10-game sweep concluded Saturday with a 20-0 victory over Canton McKinley should be convincing to a majority of the state’s sports writers and sportscasters, we believe, but there was rigging the past two weeks in several spots, which if carried on again this week would make the Tigers’ hopes for a state title via AP recognition almost futile.
* * *
THERE HAVE been suggestions that we fight fire with fire, and attempt to enlist our friends to rig the poll in favor of Massillon.

Not desiring to get our hands dirtied in the already muddy water, we will have no part of it.

We have cast our ballot as have most of the state’s sportswriters and radio sportscasters. Naturally, we voted our Tigers first. They are the only ranking team in the state that has won 10 straight this season, and against tougher opposition than the other ranked teams have faced.

After re-examining the scores, we voted undefeated Kettering Fairmount second, which is a change from last week, when we cast our second place ballot for Springfield.

Springfield, which we vote third, and Kettering, played two common foes, Middletown and Dayton Chaminade. Kettering looked the better against Middletown, winning 26-0 while Springfield won 38-26. Springfield made the better showing against Chaminade, winning 60-0 while Kettering won 22-0.

Springfield at no time during the season met a team in the top 10 of the AP ratings, while Kettering knocked Troy out of the top 10 with an 8-0 victory.
* * *
FRANKLY WE feel the Associated Press poll no longer serves its purpose, as a result of the rigging this year, and should be thrown out as a basis for selecting a state champion until some better plan can be devised.

A few writers and sportscasters have put Fritz Howell, sports editor of the Associated Press and conductor of the poll on the spot. Two weeks ago Howell tossed all ballots into the waste paper basket when 14 writers and radio commentators failed to list Massillon on their 10-team ballot/

Last week Howell resumed the poll. The rigging continued but not on as large a scale. One writer didn’t put the Tigers in the first 10, a number of others including one block of eight placed them eighth or ninth – and most of this conniving came from northwest and northeast Ohio – not from Springfield and not from the cities of Tiger opponents.

The rigging started three weeks ago. The Tigers who had been in front from the start of the season led by 83 points on Oct. 27.

The Tigers knocked off sixth ranked Warren, but their lead in the poll dropped to 36 points. Next they beat Barberton 90-0 and that was the week Howell tossed the poll away.

When the poll was resumed last week, the count showed Springfield had gone around Massillon to lead by 45 points.

Maybe the Tigers- 20-0 victory over McKinley will change the sentiment of those who ganged up on them the past two weeks.

We’ll just have to wait and see.
* * *
IN THE MEATIME our congratulations go to Coach Leo Strang and his staff for a job well done this fall. They and their fancy Tigers have given Washington high school its first undefeated season since Chuck Mather’s romp in 1953.

Joe Sparma

1954: Massillon 26, Canton McKinley 6

Tigers Win Battle For State Title
Massillon Gridders Smash McKinley 26-6; Await Final AP Poll


Having surprised their most loyal fans by the manner in which they lashed Canton McKinley 26-6 before an overflow crowd in Tiger stadium Saturday afternoon, the Washington high Tigers today awaited the result of the final press polls which determine the Ohio high school champion. The game had been billed as a battle for state title.

Ohio sports writers and radio commentators cast the ballots, and judging by last week’s voting (and despite organized efforts of one or more other high schools to lure votes) the Tigers are expected to be proclaimed state champs a seventh consecutive year.

The Massillon gridders ranked second, (behind Canton McKinley) in all three major news services last week, and should move into the No. 1 spot as a result of their convincing triumph over the state’s top ranked team.
* * *
THE VICTORY leaves Massillon with a 9-1 record which is the same status as that of Mansfield and Alliance high schools. The Tigers handed Mansfield its only loss, an 18-0 defeat and Alliance handed Massillon its one defeat 19-7. But Massillon also whipped the Bulldogs, the team that mauled Alliance 26-6. It was Canton’s second loss.

The Rutgers Hall of Fame trophy will be awarded the winner of the Associated Press poll, biggest of them all.

The Tigers were magnificent in their triumph over the Bulldogs.

Entering the game a seven-point underdog, the Massillon gridders tore into their Canton adversary with a determination that could not be stopped.

“They played like a team that wanted to be state champion,” Canton Coach Wade Watts, deeply disappointed, said after the game. “Homer Floyd was the difference,” he stated as he complimented the Tiger halfback for his great exhibition.

And Tiger Coach Tom Harp, with a lock of hair hanging over his forehead and a smile from ear to ear, said, “We thought we could do it all along. We knew we were playing a great football team and we prepared accordingly.”
* * *
THE MASSILLON line played almost flawlessly and the backs blocked well. The vaunted Bulldog ground attack was grounded and the Canton aerial fireworks stopped.

The 26-6 scored hardly tells the superiority of the Massillon team. You will find it better in the statistics which show the Tigers with 21 first downs to Canton’s six (two of the six came on a penalty and pass interference) and 446 net yards gained to 135.

The Tigers scored one touchdown in the second period, two in the third and one in the fourth. Canton’s only score came in the fourth quarter.

The Tigers actually lost what could have been three other touchdowns when a pass was dropped in the end zone, and the ball lost on fumbles as the locals were on the seven and three-yard lines while in possession of a first down.

It was a personal triumph for the youthful Harp who took over a tough assignment this summer without benefit of spring practice, and won nine of his 10 games.
* * *
HARP STEPPED into the big footprints left by Chuck Mather when he walked off to the University of Kansas last winter after winning the Ohio championship six consecutive years.

None dared to expect the ex-Carrollton high coach with only three years of experience behind him to win nine of 10 games and a possible state title in his first year.

He installed his own system at the start of fall practice and saw his team slowly catch on as the autumn progressed. By mid-season he pulled his first upset by downing Mansfield high, which had been favored to win by at least a touchdown. He got his squad up for that one, and he had them up again Saturday – and how.

Seldom have we seen a Massillon line play as the Tiger line did Saturday, or the blockers lower the boom on opposing tacklers with as deadly timing.

You can praise the backs for their hard running, but the guys who made it possible were, Robert Williams, Dave Canary, Ken Lorch, Bob Williams, Chuck Hill, Joe Holloway, Russ Maier and Tom Spicer.

They hit hard on offense and bolstered by Ronnie Moore, Jim Schumacher, Jim Houston, Tom Stephens, Bob Cocklin and Dick Fromholtz, plugged all leaks on defense.

As Floyd said after the game when asked how he felt: “Fine. The boys sure blocked swell for me today. I couldn’t have run without them.”

And how he ran!

He personally carried the ball 28 times, and gained 263 net yards, scored two touchdowns and intercepted two Canton passes.

His longest run, a 55-yard dash, went for naught as he fumbled when tackled on the
three-yard line, the ball rolling into the end zone, where Bulldog Horace Harris recovered for a touchback.
* * *
WHILE FLOYD put on a great show, the surprise to Canton was the hard running of Jerry Yoder. The Bulldogs had expected trouble from Floyd but Yoder made as much yardage as Floyd the first half and ground out the Tigers’ first touchdown. He carried 19 times for a net gain of 125 yards. Ronald Boekel was used sparingly. He carried only seven times and gained 38 yards. Rich Crescenze and Andy Stavroff each carried once, Rich gaining a yard and Andy losing one.

It all adds up to 426 net yards gained on the ground. Add to that 20 yards made on two completed passes, one of which went for a touchdown, and you have 446 net yards gained for the Tigers.

In containing the Bulldogs the Tigers allowed them but 86 net yards on the ground and 49 in the air.

The personal duel between Canton’s flashy halfback, John Goodrich, and Floyd which had been ballyhooed in some papers and by some radio commentators was a fizzle. Floyd was so far in front there was no comparison. Goodrich carried nine times for 43 net yards gained. His longest run went for 21 yards in the third quarter which followed a 40-yard bootleg play by Canton’s Ronnie Carnahan. The two plays netted 61 of the yards gained by McKinley.

The Tigers knew they had to stop Goodrich to win for he was the Bulldogs’ high point man with 119 points for the season.
* * *
McKINLEY never could get its offense rolling properly. Coach Watts said a head injury to Quarterback Jim Dreher on the very first play from scrimmage which forced him out the rest of the game hurt to some extent since he counts the cadence of the Canton team, but Watts hastened to say that he did not want to take anything away from the Massillon victory. Dreher got jolted by Floyd’s knee when he tackled him.

The Bulldogs’ only effort in the first half came on a long pass to Herman Jackson following a 15-yard penalty slapped on the Tigers for unnecessary roughness. Canton was offside on the pass play, however, and lost what would have been a first down on the 17-yard line.

The Tigers on the other hand were a threat virtually every time they got the ball in their hands but still failed to score until only 55 seconds remained of the first half. Then they shoved over the first of their four touchdowns, Jerry Yoder going across from the one. Floyd scored both of his touchdowns in the third period and Robert Williams got the final in the fourth period on a five-yard flip from Crescenze.

Herman Jackson scored the Bulldogs’ lone touchdown in the fourth quarter on a 13-yard pass from Goodrich.

Andy Stavroff almost went to the Promised Land on the kickoff when he was clear at midfield, but lacked the speed to keep ahead of the pack and was felled on the Canton 43.

Floyd and Yoder smashed to a first down on the 31 but the attack fizzled out and the Tigers lost the ball on the 25.
* * *
McKINLEY quick-kicked on third down to the Massillon 21 and the Tigers got one first down before being stopped in midfield and forced to punt, Tom Stephens kicking to the 23.

The Bulldogs gained but one yard in three attempts and kicked out on the Massillon 38.

Yoder race 18 yards to the Canton 44 but Floyd lost the ball on a fumble, Goodrich recovering for Canton on the latter’s 38. Three plays would have ended in a net loss of a yard had not the Tigers been called for unnecessary roughness and McKinley given a first down on the Massillon 47 with a 15-yard penalty.

Then followed the long pass to Jackson for what would have been a first down on the Tiger 17 but McKinley was offside and penalized five yards. Three plays gained seven yards so Goodrich punted to Floyd on the eight who was nailed by Sheeler when he tried to cut after catching the ball.

Momentarily in the hole, the Tigers worked out as Yoder and Floyd got a first down on the 21 and Floyd ripped off 13 for another first on his 34. He gained sic more and then caught a pass from Crescenze that produced 15 yards and a first down on the McKinley 45. Floyd and Yoder carried to a first on the 30 but, after Yoder gained two yards, three Massillon passes were wasted and Canton took over on its 28.

Again the Bulldogs were forced to punt and the ball went out of bounds on the Canton 41.

This time the Tigers were not to be denied. Floyd, Yoder and Boekel, in that order made a first down on the 27. Floyd ripped through to a first on the four with a beautiful 23-yard run. Yoder crashed for three. Crescenze moved it almost to the goal and Yoder whammed over for the six points.

Morrow missed the attempted point and the clock showed 55 seconds left to play.
* * *
FOLLOWING the kickoff, Sheeler tossed 15 yards to Goodrich for the Bulldogs’ only earned first down of the first half. They tried it again but this time Holloway intercepted and ran back to the Canton 27.

With only five seconds left, Crescenze shot the ball toward Robert Williams in the end zone. It was on the tip of his fingers, but he couldn’t hand on to what would have been the back-breaking touchdown.

Williams was almost despondent in the dressing room during intermission. Coach Harp grabbed him as he headed for the locker room and told him to forget it, and every player slapped him on the back with the encouraging remark, we’ll get some more next half, while he sat weeping, head in hands.

And get some more they did.

They changed several blocking assignments the second half designed to free Floyd and Yoder, and they worked out just as hoped for.

On the first play from scrimmage after the kickoff Floyd almost got away, going 32 yards to the Canton 43. And Yoder in two attempts went to the 30, Floyd picked up two more, and when Canton spread its defense to meet the Tigers’ new blocking pattern, Floyd shot through the middle on a quick opener for 28 yards and the second T.D. of the game.
* * *
FLOYD GETS credit for the touchdown, but he was probably thinking of Maier and Hill on this play when he said, “I got some good blocking today,” for it was Maier and Hill who opened the gap in the Bulldog line that allowed Floyd to speed through for the points.

This time Morrow kicked the extra point and it was 13-0.

Floyd stopped Canton after the kickoff when he intercepted Goodrich’s long pass and came back to his 45.

Yoder startled the folks by immediately racing to a first down on the Canton 27 and Floyd in two carries had another first down on the seven. A lateral toss to Yoder was wide and Jerry couldn’t hand on to it, Canton ending the threat by covering a fumble on its 13.

Three McKinley plays only gained four yards so Goodrich booted to Floyd who was downed on his 43 with no return. Yoder on the first play went 21 yards to the Canton 31 and Boekel headed through center for 18 more and a first on the 13. A pass over the line was grounded but Floyd circled his right end for the third touchdown and Morrow kicked the 20th point.

That made the Bulldog snarl a bit.

Frasker Jackson returned Morrow’s kickoff well to his 31 and Carnahan on a bootleg fooled the Massillon team as he headed around his left end and went 40 yards before Fromholtz somehow or other shifted through a wave of Canton blockers and got him.

Now it was Goodrich’s turn to show what he could do and he went 21 yards for his best run of the day to the eight. But that was it.

Goodrich took it two more times, made three and wound up back where he had started. Carnahan tried to sweep his end and was thrown for another loss of 10 yards. A grounded pass finished the threat and the Tigers took over on their 18.

Boekel got a yard and Floyd three as the third period ended.
* * *
WHEN FLOYD failed to gain, Stephens dropped back to punt and got a high pass from center. He picked up the ball dropped it to his foot and gave a feeble kick after being all but down. The ball didn’t cross the line of scrimmage, just going to the 17. That gave McKinley another chance.

A pass to Sheeler was good for three and Jackson wiggled loose to reach the end zone where he caught a 14-yard toss from Goodrich for the Bulldogs’ only points. Canary broke through to block the attempted point.

Floyd got to his 42 with the following kickoff and on the next play went all the way to the three where he was overhauled by Bob Williams of McKinley. He fumbled when tackled, the ball rolling into the end zone where Horace Harris hopped on it for a touchback.

McKinley was given the ball on its 20, couldn’t get anywhere in two downs and for some unknown reason quick-kicked into the wind on third down.

The ball only went forward five yards, the Tigers taking it on their own 25.

Floyd in two carries got to the 13, and then to the five where Crescenze pitched over the line to Williams for the final touchdown of the game. Johnny James couldn’t get the ball down for Morrow so he tried to run for the extra point but didn’t make it.

Canton came back after the kickoff to move the ball to the Massillon 39 where Cocklin intercepted a pass and was knocked out doing it to end the threat with the ball on the 28. Two plays later the game ended.

The line-up and summary:
ENDS – Lorch, R. Williams, Houston, Canary, Francisco.
TACKLES – B. Williams, Hill, Blocher, Moore, Schumacher.
GUARDS – Maier, Holloway, Fisher.
CENTERS – Spicer, Morrow.
QUARTERBACKS – Crescenze, James.
HALFBACKS – Floyd, Yoder, Stavroff, Stephens, Fromholtz.
FULLBACK – Boekel.

ENDS – Sheeler, H. Jackson, Jack, Williams, Lancaster.
TACKLES – Kompara, Graham, Martins, Blackmon, Fohel.
GUARDS – Patrick, Bell, Clawson, Speroff.
CENTERS – Perdue, Fach.
QUARTERBACKS – J. Dreher, F. Jackson.
HALFBACKS – Goodrich, Carnahan, Garman, Grimsley, H. Harris.
FULLBACK – N. Harris.

Score by periods:
Massillon 0 6 14 6 26
McKinley 0 0 0 6 6

Massillon – Floyd 2; Yoder; R. Williams.
McKinley – H. Jackson.

Points after touchdown: Massillon – Morrow 2 (placekicks).

Referee – Dan Tehan, Hamilton.
Umpire – Jim Lymper, Mansfield.
Head Linesman – C.W. Rupp, Cuyahoga Falls.
Field Judge – Ted Jones, Chagrin Falls.

Individual And Game Statistics
Mass. McK.
First downs 21 6
Passes attempted 8 13
Passes completed 2 4
Had passes intercepted 0 4
Yards gained passing 20 49
Yards gained rushing 437 105
Total yards gained 457 154
Yards lost 11 19
Net yards gained 446 135
Times punted 2 6
Average punt (yards) 11 31
Yards punts returned by 4 0
Times kicked off 4 3
Average kickoff (yards) 41 51
Yards kickoffs returned by 97 22
Times fumbled 3 1
Lost ball on fumble 3 0
Times penalized 2 2
Yards penalized 20 10

Ball Carrying
Carried Gained Lost Total
Floyd 28 266 3 263
Yoder 19 132 7 125
Boekel 7 38 0 38
Crescenze 1 1 0 1
Stavroff 1 0 1 -1
—- —- —- —-
Totals 56 437 11 426

Goodrich 9 46 3 43
Carnahan 5 47 11 36
N. Harris 5 10 5 5
Sheeler 1 0 0 0
Garman 1 2 0 2
—- — —- —-
Totals 21 105 19 86

Homer Floyd

1953: Massillon 48, Canton McKinley 7

Tigers Smash Canton McKinley 48-7
Victory Should Bring Sixth Consecutive Ohio Title To Local School


Massillon today awaited the outcome of the final Associated Press poll which is expected to name the Washington high school Tigers state champions for the sixth consecutive year.

Writers among the 16,500 people who saw the Massillon gridders slash Canton McKinley to pieces in the first half of their traditional game in Fawcett stadium Saturday afternoon and win 48-7 are convinced the local team deserves the state crown.

The triumph was the Tigers 23rd in a row and completed two consecutive undefeated seasons. It was the 57th victory for Coach Chuck Mather and his staff since they took charge of Tiger football in 1948. They have lost but three games, one each in the 1948, 1949 and 1951 seasons. They also were undefeated in 1950. The win over McKinley likewise was Massillon’s 28th of the 58-game series that started in 1894. McKinley won 25 and five ended in tie scores.
* * *
THE TIGERS were terrific.

Program Cover

Their first half offense was the most devastating, most perfect we have ever seen.

You have probably heard and read most of the figures by now, but they are worth repeating here.

In the first four plays from scrimmage the Tigers got three touchdowns. It took them six plays to get their fourth, two their fifth and one their sixth. In other words, their remarkable offense produced six touchdowns in 13 plays from scrimmage. Anyone want to dispute their claim to state champions.

They rolled up a 42-0 lead in one and one-half periods, after which Coach Chuck Mather opened the gates of mercy and began giving his senior substitutes as much action as possible in their final high school game.
* * *
McKINLEY recovered a fumble inside the 15-yard line in the last two minutes of the second period and scored in the last second to produce its only points of the game. There wasn’t even time left for a kickoff.

Mather kept a flow of senior subs in his lineup throughout the last half. This and an improved Bulldog defense, coupled with fumbles and three penalties, held the Tigers to one touchdown the last half, that coming on a blocked McKinley punt.

The Tigers devastating play is revealed in their long runs and long passes for touchdowns and a vicious defense that kept Bulldog ball carriers nailed to the turf throughout most of the first half.

Offensively, there was an 80-yard T.D. run by Homer Floyd, three passes, all for touchdowns, (that’s all he threw the first half) by Dick Crescenze and some remarkable catches by Jim Letcavits, Tom Boone and John Traylor, good for 44 yards, 51 yards and 73 yards respectively. We can still see Wade Watts, Canton McKinley coach, bury his head in his hands after the last one that hoisted the score to 42-0.
* * *
IT TOOK just 32 seconds to get the first T.D. and perhaps we had better take time out right here to account for the six in 13 feature.

Massillon fans were the most surprised lot in the place to see the Tigers win the toss and then elect to kickoff. They always receive when they win the toss. But Saturday at Canton it was different. Coach Chuck Mather informed his Co-Captains, John Traylor and Bruce Schram that if they won the toss they should kickoff because he figured McKinley was better defensively than offensively and he would rather meet them in their weakest department.

It was the right decision.

Ron Boekel gave the ball its hardest boot of the season right into the hands of Nat Harris, the Bulldogs’ ball carrying ace. But Nat was hit so viciously he fumbled and Traylor pounced on the ball on the four. McKinley jumped offside before a play could get under way from scrimmage and the Bulldogs were penalized to the one-yard line. On the first play Crescenze sneaked through from his quarterback spot for six points and Tom Boone kicked the seventh.

The Tigers next got the ball through a punt that rolled dead on the 15. John Francisco put it on the 20 in a slash at right tackle. On the second play of the series, Homer Floyd broke through on a trap play, cut to his right and raced 80 yards down the sideline to score. That made two touchdowns in three plays.
* * *
THE TIGERS kicked off, then took the ball away from the Bulldogs on downs on the Canton 44. On the first play Crescenze shot the leather to Letcavits who made a brilliant catch, almost fell down, but steadied himself with one hand to keep on his feet and race the rest of the distance with Tom Boone removing the first Canton tackler from his path. That made three touchdowns in four plays.

It took a little longer to get the fourth. The Tigers started from their own 25 where they got the ball on a punt.

Traylor made three at left end, and Floyd ran for a first down but a 15-yard penalty was assessed for clipping. Traylor went for 13, Francisco for 10 and Crescenze made it a first down on his 48. Francisco got a yard and Crescenze whipped the ball 51 yards to Boone for the touchdown. That and the point that followed made it 28-0.
Only two plays were needed to get the fifth T.D. Joe Holloway crashed through to block Ken Bandi’s punt and Boone pounced on the ball on the six-yard line. Traylor carried it to the one, going over, but his knee touched a yard short before he laid his arms across the goal. Francisco smashed through with the score and it was 35-0.
* * *
ONE PLAY was needed to get the sixth. A quick kick by Harris rolled to the Tiger 27. Crescenze immediately winged the ball to Traylor who never broke stride as he caught up with it in midfield and raced the rest of the distance to give his team a 42-0 lead.

That just about wraps up the Massillon tale of victory.

In it you have all four backs and the two ends, scoring a touchdown each and with five minutes and 20 seconds of the period still remaining to be played.

Mather began pouring in substitutes, seniors and some juniors. Roy Johnson, a senior, who hasn’t gotten in a whole lot this year, took over the quarterbacking of the team, replacing Crescenze who did not return to the game until the last four minutes of the fourth quarter.

The Tigers fumbled the ball away to the Bulldogs the next time they got it, Canton covering inside the 15. With Sophomore Horace Harris doing most of the running, the Bulldogs marched to the one yard line where Harris went over just was the half ended. John Kompara kicked the extra point and that ended Canton’s scoring for the day.
* * *
THE TIGERS got one more touchdown when Ron Gardner blocked a McKinley punt late in the third period on the 16-yard line. He picked it up and ran across for the six points to end his football career in a blaze of glory. Ronnie has played mostly on defense. The touchdown, the only one he has scored, was just about the biggest thing that could happen to him.

The Tigers had other chances in the third and fourth quarter but penalties, substitutions and an improved Canton defense locked them out.

They were well on their way the first time they got the ball in the third period when McKinley covered a fumble on second down on the 14-yard line. They had what would have been a first down on the 15 had not the ball been called back because of a clipping penalty called against the Tigers and a personal foul against McKinley. The two nullified each other. Then Traylor ran to a first down on the five, but back came the ball again and another 15-yard penalty for clipping that necessitated the only Massillon punt of the afternoon.
* * *
THE TIGERS lost the ball to the Bulldogs on a fumble on the 38 early in the fourth quarter to end another drive. Then again they drove to what would have been third down on the four-yard line with a yard to go for a first down, but the ball was called back and a five-yard penalty slapped on for offside. That put it on the 18 and they lost it on downs on the eight. It was their last effort, for Canton held the pigskin the rest of the way.

So you can see where penalties and fumbles helped throttle the Tiger offense the last half.

The Tigers were just as impressive in the statistics as on the scoreboard. First downs were 13-10 in their favor and they gained 447 net yards to McKinley’s 114 net yards. They completed five of 10 passes for 205 yards. McKinley completed 8 of 13 passes for 49 yards.

The game had its heroes – plenty of them we would say – the 11 offensive starters and those who jumped in for defensive chores – all were in the contest up to their necks. The backfield boys have already been mentioned, but without the line in front of them they could not have shown so brightly. The Tiger forward wall literally tore the Bulldogs to pieces the first half. Give credit to a pair of great ends, Letcavits and Boone; to Bruce Schram and Ronnie Dean, the tackles; to Joe Eaglowski and Russ Maier, who filled in for the injured Ronnie Agnes at guard; and to Tom Fisher, center. And don’t forget Willie Longshore, Gardner, Joe Holloway, Bob Williams, Eddie Fletcher, Chuck Lentz, Ken Lorch, Andy Stavroff, Bill Stone, Carl Porter, Johnson, Jerry Yoder, Ray Byrd, Boekel, Dick Fromholtz, Al Shilling, Jim Woolley, Chuck Hill and Joe Lopez, all of whom had a part in the victory.
* * *
LIGHTS BURNED late in Massillon Saturday night as citizens and students celebrated the victory. The students held a victory dance at the school, citizens celebrated at parties about town and at country clubs.

Everywhere credit was given the team and Coach Mather and his assistants; Carl Schroeder, Paul Schofer, Lauri Wartiainen, Elwood Kammer and Dave Putts.

The questions most asked of them were why they didn’t pour it on; what was the argument over the ball; and was this your best team.

You have Mather’s answer to the first question – he wanted to give all seniors as much action as possible.

His face was red on the second. Crescenze came out of the game shouting, “They are using a rubber ball in there.”

Mather bristled: “They can’t do that,” and shouted to the referee, “Let me see that ball.”

He was shown the ball.

“It was leather,” said Chuck, telling of the incident. “There wasn’t much I could say.”
* * *
WE AGREE with Mather’s answer to the third question that it is difficult to say any team is the best in high school history, but we also agree that this year’s eleven certainly ranks with the greatest on the basis of its 10 straight victories. And we hasten to point out that its opposition has likewise been unusually good as a whole.

It you want to look at it this way, six of Massillon’s opponents only dropped a combined total of five games to teams other than Massillon during the season.

Fremont Ross was beaten only by the Tigers: Warren was beaten only by Massillon and Hamilton; Alliance by Massillon and Youngstown Urusline; Mansfield by Massillon and Warren; Steubenville by Massillon and Warren; and Toledo Waite by Massillon and DeVilbiss. Canton Lincoln lost but two other games in addition to that to Massillon. It was beaten by Alliance and Barberton.

Certainly, the Tiger eleven was one of the most poplar with Massillon fans. The ability of Floyd, Francisco and Traylor to break loose for a touchdown at any moment and the constant threat of Crescenze tossing a touchdown pass provided fireworks every night.

The team is in every sense of the word, a deserving champion.

The line-up and summary:

ENDS – Letcavits, Boone, Lorch, Lentz, Lopez.
TACKLES – Schram, Dean, Williams, Hill, Woolley.
GUARDS – Eaglowski, Maier, Holloway, Gardner, Shilling.
CENTERS – Fisher, Fletcher.
QUARTERBACKS – Crescenze, Johnson, Porter.
HALFBACKS – Traylor, Francisco, Longshore, Yoder, Stavroff, Fromholtz, Byrd.
FULLBACKS – Floyd, Stone, Boekel.

ENDS – Roman, Carter, Jackson.
TACKLES – Kompara, Crawford, Cerwinsky.
GUARDS – Wilds, Patrick, Graham.
CENTER – Perdue.
QUARTERBACKS – Dreher, Killians.
HALFBACKS – Bandi, Garman, Matthews, H. Harris
FULLBACKS – N. Harris.

Score by periods:
Massillon 21 21 6 0 48
McKinley 0 7 0 0 7

Massillon – Crescenze, Floyd, Letcavits, Boone, Francisco, Traylor, Gardner.
McKinley – H. Harris.

Points after touchdown:
Massillon – Boone 6 (placekicks).
McKinley – Kompara (placekick).

Mass. McK.
First downs 13 10
Passes attempted 10 13
Passes completed 5 8
Had passes intercepted 0 0
Yards gained passing 205 49
Yards gained rushing 244 122
Total yards gained 440 171
Yards lost 2 57
Net yards gained 447 114
Times kicked off 9 0
Average kickoff (yards) 42 —
Yards kickoffs returned by — 82
Times punted 1 8
Average punt (yards) 30 30
Yards punts returned by 7 3
Had punts blocked 0 2
Times Fumbled 3 3
Lost ball on fumbles 3 2
Times penalized 5 5
Yards penalized 65 22

Jim Lectavits

1952: Massillon 41, Canton McKinley 8

Await Outcome Of Final Press Poll;  Massillon Gridders End Undefeated Season With Victory Over Old Rival


Having completed an undefeated season by whipping Canton McKinley 41-8 here Saturday afternoon, the Washington high Tigers today awaited the final Associated Press poll of the season Tuesday which is expect to name them state champions for the fifth straight year.

Program Cover

Virtually all but one of the writers who saw the Tigers maul the Bulldogs were ready to give Massillon the title after the game. Springfield’s representative, Dan Hoyt, wasn’t convinced, and remained loyal to his own Wildcats, for which we don’t blame him one bit. “I’d like to see the two teams meet, it would be a good game,” he said. Dan didn’t think McKinley very strong, but he should remember that the Bulldogs came within two points of beating Mansfield as badly as the latter was beaten by Springfield Friday.

The Cleveland, Canton and Akron papers in their Sunday write-ups gave the Tigers the title, which shows the line of thought of some of the boys.

The ballots were being cast today and Tuesday the results should be known.
* * *
THE TIGER victory over McKinley, scored before a paid attendance of 17,830, climaxed a great season for the Tigers and the team will go down in Massillon pigskin history as one of the greatest.

The victory extended to two games the Tiger edge over the Bulldogs in their 57-game series that dates back to 1894. Massillon has now won 27, Canton 25, while five ended in tie scores.

The triumph brought Massillon’s victory string to 13 games. It was the 47th win for Chuck Mather since he took over the helm here in 1948, and his second undefeated season.

His 1948, 1949 and 1951 teams each lost one game.

“I wouldn’t say this team was better than the undefeated 1950 team,” Mather said after the game. “We had a good bunch of fellows then, too. But I will say this was one of the best and certainly a fine bunch of players to work with.”
* * *
THE TIGER COACH gave them all a big pat on the back as he made the rounds in the hilarious locker room after the game.

The players themselves bore the marks of a hard-fought contest. They were scratched and bruised, and Fullback Lee Nussbaum, who emerged from the contest as the leading ground gainer, didn’t know the score. He had suffered a slight concussion which had him somewhat foggy for several hours.

Coach Mather gave the Bulldogs credit for playing a hard game and was even louder in the praise of his opponent after looking over the motion pictures Sunday. “If we hadn’t been up we would have lost this one,” he said. “Do you know they hit us three times as hard as we were hit all season? They were playing their hearts out. So were our boys and that’s the only reason we won.”

The hard play caused tempers to flare and Bob Khoenle and Sam Williams of Massillon and two Canton players were tossed out by the officials; Williams in the third period and Khoenle in the fourth.
* * *
MATHER was critical of the officiating. “It was the poorest officiated game I ever saw and you can quote me as saying so,” he said after going over the pictures.

Mather was a little disappointed in Misere’s performance until he saw the pictures. “After watching the pictures I admire how that little fellow stayed in there and took it. He really got a going over when passing,” he said.

Mather said he wasn’t going to single out any individual for praise. “They all did well, otherwise we couldn’t have won,” he said.

We noted, however, that he was particularly pleased with the way Nussbaum came through in his last high school game. He broke the Bulldogs’ back on the opening play from scrimmage with an end sweep of 40 yards and he finished the day with a fraction less than nine yards per try for the 21 times he carried the ball.
* * *
LEE GAINED 181 yards, John Traylor 93, John Francisco 54, John Tasseff 40 and Clarence Stewart 21.

The Tigers rolled up 390 yards by rushing, lost 28 for a net of 362. They gained 65 yards by passing, giving them a net of 427.

Their total offense in victory was as superior to the Bulldogs as the score on the board. McKinley gained 70 yards rushing and lost 21 for a net of 49. They gained 121 yards passing for a total net offense of 170 yards. First downs were just as one-sided, 22-7 in favor of the Tigers.
* * *
WHILE the ball carriers were having a track meet, the Tiger line and defense should be given a big share of the credit.

The linemen, Bob Khoenle, Sam Williams, Jim Geiser, Bruce Schram, Bob Clinage, Bob Kraus and Frank Corral slit the Bulldog forward wall wide open and consistently made big holes for the ball carriers to romp through. Their charge at the same time so bottled up the Bulldog backs that they spent much of their time running in their own backfield.

John Goodrich, ace of the Canton team, for instance, gained but 11 yards and lost seven, for a net gain of four in the eight times he carried the ball. Leading ground gainer was Dick Albert, the Canton ball carrier who had 21 yards to show for the five times he sneaked through center with the pigskin from his quarterback position.

The Tiger blocking was likewise something to behold. It was at its best on a 33-yard punt return by Traylor and a 32-yard run for the second touchdown of the game from a deep reverse. Johnny had five teammates convoying him over the goal line.
* * *
HARDEST TOUCHDOWN run was that unleashed by John Tasseff substituting for Johnny Francisco when the latter injured his leg. It was a 31-yard fourth period effort in which Tasseff raced down the sideline and without too much help shook off three Canton tacklers in disdain as they took their turn at trying to bring him down. The run produced the Tigers’ fifth T.D.

The game had its oddities, and two of them combined to give McKinley a safety, its first points of the game.

Willard Grimsley, who played a great defensive game for Canton and whose hard tackling stopped what might have been two or three more Tiger touchdowns, got off a beautiful
49-yard punt in the fourth quarter that stopped dead just inches short of the goal. We had not seen such a kick this season. Traylor stood with his heels against the end zone line as though to punt back, but ran with the ball. He barely got out, but Misere was caught pushing in the end zone which gave McKinley two points.
* * *
THE TWO POINTS seemed to pep up the Bulldogs because they took the following free kick on their 47 and in three plays had a touchdown, Albert tossing to Kenny Young for 49 yards and the score.

It was actually the only Bulldog threat. Canton never got over the 50-yard line the first quarter; got no closer than the 42 the second, and otherwise made its deepest penetration to the third when it marched to a first down on the 32 only to lose the ball on John Climo’s pass interception on the 14-yard line.

In addition to their touchdown bid the Bulldogs twice barely got over the 50-yard line in the fourth quarter, reaching the 42 both times.

The Tigers, on the other hand were dangerous every time they had the ball. Two 15-yard penalties for clipping and a couple of intercepted passes probably kept them from scoring two or three more.

In fact an intercepted pass stopped the initial march that might have gone for a score. This break however, was offset by Sam Williams, covering a Canton fumble on the seven and one-half yard line on the series of plays that followed.
* * *
WINNING the toss the Tigers elected to receive.

Traylor brought the kickoff back to the 26 and on the first play Nussbaum whirled around left end and went 40 yards to the Canton 34 where he was knocked out of bounds. Three plays gained but six yards and Misere’s fourth down pass was intercepted by Bob Washburn on the Canton 14.

The Bulldogs gained but a yard on two plays and Washburn fumbled on third down; Williams covering on the seven and one-half. The Bulldogs yielded ground stubbornly. Nussbaum carried twice and gained but three yards. Traylor on third down put the ball a foot short of the goal with a terrific lunge and Nussbaum took it over. Four minutes and 42 seconds of the period had expired. Tom Boone kicked the extra point, 7-0.
* * *
THE TIGERS stopped the Bulldogs on the 31 on the next series of plays forcing them to punt. Traylor made a brilliant 33-yard return to his 45. On second d own Misere tossed to Francisco for 29 yards and a first down on the 23 but the Tigers were penalized 15 for clipping, bringing the ball back to the McKinley 49. (The movies showed no violation). Francisco, Traylor and Nussbaum took turns at lugging the leather to the 20 where Misere was tossed for a 12-yard loss when he couldn’t find a receiver to pass to. That set the stage for one of the prettiest plays of the game, a deep reverse that saw Traylor come around his right end behind superb blocking for 32 yards and a touchdown. Boone’s kick was good. 14-0.

The Tigers were two-thirds of the way through the second period before they scored again. A 15-yard penalty for illegal use of the hands tied them up the first time they had the ball, forcing them to punt. They marched to a touchdown the next time, after getting the leather when Grimsley punted and out on the Massillon 31. Nussbaum put together runs of 16 and 24 yards in the drive that went to the four where the big fullback rammed it over. Boone kicked the extra point. 21-0.

The Tigers were on their way again in the period when Goodrich ended the threat by intercepting Misere’s pass on the Canton 38.

The locals scored the first time they got the ball in the third period but it took a lot of hard football to get it. Climo got the leather by intercepting Albert’s pass on the 14. A 13-yard pass, Misere to Bob Khoenle picked up a first down and the Bulldgos had a 15-yard penalty slapped on them for unnecessary roughness. Misere hurled a sweep pass to Tasseff good for 44 yards and a touchdown that went for naught because of the Tigers’ “illegal procedure”. Some hard running by Nussbaum and Tasseff and Misere’s 23-yard pitch to Khoenle put the ball on the four. On fourth down Misere bucked through center for the last foot and the fourth touchdown of the game. Again Boone kicked the extra point. 28-0
* * *
A 15-YARD penalty wiped out a first down on the Bulldog 30 late in the third quarter, forcing the Tigers to punt. Next time they got the ball which was early in the fourth period, they drove for their fifth touchdown. It started from the Canton 44. With Nussbaum dong most of the lugging, including a 24-yard effort, the Tigers moved the leather to the 31 and set the stage for Tasseff’s fine touchdown sprint. Boone missed his try for point. 34-0

Canton came back to score the safety and the touchdown already recorded here.

Boone’s interception of Albert’s pass and a runback of 16 yards put the ball on the Canton 14 and in position for the final points of the game. Francisco and Traylor took it to the three and Traylor went through the left side for the touchdown. Boone kicked the extra point. 41-8.

10 In A Row

ENDS – Williams, Khoenle, Letcavits, Crone, Gardner.
TACKLES – Geiser, Schram, Younkers, Gumpp, Rubio.
GUARDS – Clinage, Kraus, Shilling, Agnes, Dean, Fabianich.
CENTERS – Corral, Kimmins.
QUARTERBACKS – Misere, Johnson, Porter.
HALFBACKS – Traylor, Francisco, Boone, Millar, Floyd, Mlincek, Climo, Tasseff, Longshore.
FULLBACKS – Nussbaum, Stewart, Stone.

ENDS – Sheeler, Umbles, Young, Carter.
TACKLES – Cole, Barber, Kompara.
GUARDS – Wildes, Fach.
CENTERS – Noel, Rehfus.
HALFBACKS – Goodrich, Washburn, Grimsley, Bednareyz, Matthew.
FULLBACKS – Good, Burke, Mack.

Score by periods:
Massillon 14 7 7 13 41
McKinley 0 0 0 8 8

Massillon – Nussbaum 2; Traylor 2; Tasseff; Misere.
McKinley – Young.

Points after touchdown:
Massillon – Boone 4 (placekicks).

Safety – McKinley

Referee – Tobin.
Umpire – Rupp.
Head Linesman – Schill.
Field Judge – Sebastian.

Mass. McK
First downs 22 7
Passes attempted 12 24
Passes completed 4 10
Had passes intercepted 3 2
Yards gained passing 65 121
Yards gained rushing 390 70
Total yards gained 455 191
Yards lost 29 21
Net yards gained 427 170
Times kicked off 8 2
Average kickoff (yards) 38 51
Yards kickoffs returned by 35 128
Times punted 2 6
Average punt (yards) 38 34
Yards punts returned by 35 20
Times fumbled 2 5
Lost ball on fumbles 0 3
Times penalized 6 7
Yards penalized 70 54

Player Times Carried Gained Lost
Nussbaum 21 181 0
Traylor 6 93 4
Francisco 9 54 0
Misere 5 1 24
Tasseff 4 40 0
Stewart 3 21 0
TOTALS 58 390 28

Goodrich 8 11 7
Good 5 18 2
Washburn 1 0 8
Albert 5 21 0
Grimsley 4 11 4
Burke 2 9 0
TOTALS 25 70 21

Bob Khoenle

1951: Massillon 40, Canton McKinley 0

Tigers Defeat Canton McKinley 40-0
Local Gridders Roll Up Biggest Score In Their Many Years Of Rivalry


The dye has been cast.

The ballots will be counted tonight, and Tuesday we will know who will be recognized as the Associated Press state high school football champion for 1951.

The Washington high school Tigers wound up their campaign for the title Saturday afternoon with a convincing 40-0 victory over a hard-hitting young Canton McKinley team which had to be beaten down before it would yield multiple touchdowns to the Tiger crew.

In so doing, the Tiger team:
Won its ninth victory in 10 games this season

Rolled up the highest total made against a Canton McKinley team in the 56-game
series which started back in 1894.

Gave Massillon a 26-25 edge in the series, the first time the Tigers have held the
upper hand in games played with the Bulldogs. Five ended in tie scores.

The victory was Coach Chuck Mather’s fourth in a row over McKinley and left him with the fine record of 37 victories in the 40 games played by the local team since he took over the coaching chores here in 1948. His 1950 team was undefeated. His 1948 and 1949 teams dropped one game the same as this year’s team. Oddly enough all three losses were to fellow members of the Ohio Scholastic conference. The Tigers finished the season tied with Warren for the conference championship.

Whether the Tigers are recognized in the AP poll as champions, as they have been the last three years, will depend on the results of the balloting of sports writers and radio commentators.

The local team led the poll all year until last week when Steubenville, largely on the basis of having beaten Warren, the team that defeated Massillon, was voted into first place, three slim points ahead of the Tigers who dropped to second after squeaking through with a 6-0 victory over hitherto undefeated Barberton.
* * *
SPRINGFIELD, the No. 3 team last week and Hamilton the No. 4 team both finished their seasons with nine victories and a loss each. Springfield barely getting by Mansfield 7-0 Friday evening and Hamilton winning a close decision from Middletown 14-6 Saturday. Steubenville defeated Weirton, W. Va., an out-of-state foe, 41-0, Friday evening.
Those who had worried that McKinley’s new found spirit last week might inspire it to unprecedented heights, capable of scoring an upset, had their fears allayed early in Saturday’s game when it became apparent to everyone of the some 16,000 fans present that the Tigers had too much power for the lighter Bulldogs.

There was no denying the McKinley spirit had its effect, for Canton fans who have followed the Bulldogs all year said they never saw their team hit as hard or as full of pep as it was Saturday afternoon. It was still fighting at the end of the game, when it made its best offensive efforts of the day by twice moving inside the Tiger five-yard line. The Massillon gridders stopped them the first time, and had held them on two plays on the one-yard line the second when the gun ended hostilities for the day.
* * *
THIS DISPLAY of grit, coupled with the enthusiasm generated by students for a team that had previously won but two games out of nine, was a credit to McKinley high.

The Tigers had too much of everything for the Bulldogs as reflected in the statistics as well as the score.

The locals made 18 first downs to the Bulldogs’ five, and scored 476 net yards from scrimmage to McKinley’s 92. Only in passing were the locals stymied. They completed but one toss in 12 attempts while McKinley completed one in three.

Better receiving would have helped the Tiger pass offense, but on the other hand had the team stuck to the ground, it might have scored more touchdowns, for in every series in which the Tigers lost the ball, an incompleted pass or penalty appears.

Even so, the Massillon gridders might easily have won by two more touchdowns in addition to the points scored. They lost one when a pass was dropped in the end zone with no McKinley player in sight and another when a fine 32-yard punt return for a touchdown by John Traylor was nullified by a clipping penalty.
* * *
THE TIGERS scored the first time they came in possession of the ball. Bob Grier, going over from 10 yards out after a drive of 72 yards.

The half was within two plays of completion before they could score again. Grier running 34 yards to the 11 from which point Henry Grooms, went over for the score.

That started a string of five consecutive touchdowns which would have been stretched to six had not clipping been called on a T.D. punt return.

The Massillon offense really rolled in the third period when the locals looked like the steamrollers of old as they scored the first three times they came into possession of the ball; Grooms running 44 yards for one; Grier going 11 for another; and Tom Straughn 16 for the third.

Then came the fourth quarter and the Tigers continued their onslaught again scoring when they got the leather, Bobby Joe Johnson running 37 yards on the slickest dash of the day.
* * *
THE LOCAL team would have made it five T.D.’s in a row had clipping not been called on John Climo on Traylor’s punt return. The 15-yard penalty followed by Willard Grimsley’s pass interception got the Tigers into a hole form which they were unable to crawl out the rest of the game. Grimsley got clear back to the Massillon 21 before he was tackled and the Bulldogs successfully used a reverse to get a first down on the eight. A five-yard penalty on Massillon for delay of the game gave McKinley a first down on the three but it couldn’t penetrate pay dirt in four downs and surrendered the ball.

The Tigers got partially off the spot but lost the ball on their own 29 when they decided to complete the game without punting and failed to make three yards on fourth down.

The Bulldogs tried another reverse. Got as far as first down on the one-yard line, ran two plays, couldn’t get over and then the gun sounded.

The two goal line stands were shades of the goal-line defenses thrown up against Barberton the previous week when the Tigers successfully protected a 6-0 lead.

Coach Mather did not spare the horses for his final game of the season. He gave 35 players a taste of competition including 22 seniors who were wearing the orange and black of Massillon for the last time.
* * *
WHILE the gridiron was in better condition than most folks had expected to find it, the footing was slippery and there were many soft spots. Tiger players wore their long spikes which reduced slipping but also cut down on a gridder’s speed. The last period was played in a snow flurry so intensive that at times the players were barely visible from the press box.

We thought the officials had pulled a boner in the fourth quarter and had given McKinley five downs instead of four. However, after talking with them after the game we found the boner was on Chuck Vliet, Tiger co-captain, who took a five-yard penalty in preference to a down after a Bulldog had been thrown for a five-yard loss. In the heat of the game Chuck became a bit confused. The referee did not step off the five yards since the penalty would have placed the ball exactly where the McKinley player had been tackled. As a result everyone was confused – PA announcer included.

There was no particular celebration in the Tiger dressing room after the game. The boys appeared more concerned as to whether the score would get them any more votes in the football poll, but Coach Chuck Mather was quick to tell them that regardless of how the poll went, he personally considered them the top team in Ohio.
* * *
CANTON’S HOPES were given a shot in the arm at the very start of the game when Goodrich returned Grooms; opening kickoff 38 yards to his 47 before he was brought down to earth.

McKinley might have driven to a first down on its first series had an offside penalty not set the Bulldogs back and forced them to punt the ball rolling dead on the Tiger 28.

The Massillon team immediately launched its first touchdown drive.
Grooms carried on the first three plays and hit for two first downs on the 39 and 50. Grier hit for six and Grooms overcame a five-yard penalty to carry the ball to a first down on the Canton 39. The Tigers’ only completed pass, Paul Francisco to Dave Gable, advanced the ball another 18 to the 21. Grier and Straughn hit for a first on the 10 and Grier ripped through right tackle for the last 10 yards. Grooms kicked the extra point and it was 7-0.
* * *
THE NEXT TIME the Tigers got the ball they moved from their own 44 to the six but a clipping penalty set them back 15.

They would have made it up had Bruce Brenner, playing with a sprained ankle, been able to hold Francisco’s pass in the end zone. The ball hit him on the chest and bounced off and the Tigers forfeited on downs. To spectators it looked like an easy catch, but old football players will tell you it is one of the most difficult.

Willie Keen got the locals the ball shortly thereafter when he covered a McKinley fumble on the Bulldog 40. The Tiger wasted two downs on incomplete passes in this series and lost the ball on downs.

A five-yard penalty stopped the Tigers on their next attempt and again they forfeited the ball on downs to McKinley. They forced the Bulldogs to punt, blocked it and got the ball on the Canton 37. Again a five-yard penalty helped stop the locals causing them to lose the ball on downs.
* * *
THE SECOND period was practically over before they could get the leather again, and lost no time going the distance. They started from their 44, as Grier on first down ran to the McKinley 11, and Grooms negotiated the rest of the distance through left tackle. McKinley only had time to run one play after the kickoff.

The Bulldogs kicked to the Tigers to start the second half, Vliet being downed with the ball on his 32. Grooms rolled to his 45, Straughn carried twice for gains of two and four yards and Grier made it another first down on the Canton 44. Grooms broke through the line for a 44-yard run for the touchdown.

Holding Canton after the kickoff, Traylor was downed with Ramsayer’s punt without return. Grooms went around his left end for 26 yards and a first on the Canton 36. Straughn hit for three and Grooms for six before Grier wheeled his way through for 16 and a first down on the Bulldog 11. He went around right end on the next play for six points. Grooms missed his first kick of the game after the touchdown but the Bulldogs were offside and he made good on the second chance.

A 15-yard penalty on McKinley for roughing on the try for point, put the Bulldogs in the hole on the following kickoff and they only got out to the 10. Traylor returned Ramsayer’s punt nine yards to the Bulldog 42 and the Tigers were in motion again. Straughn hit for six, Grier for four and a first down on the 32. It was Grooms for three and one, Grier four and Grooms a first down on the 17. Grier made a yard, and Straughn the last 16 on a pretty run.

Joe Sapia gave the Tigers their next scoring opportunity when he hopped on a Canton fumble on the Bulldog 39 on the first play of the fourth quarter. Bob Johnson and Francisco moved the ball up seven yards but it came back to the 37 on a five-yard penalty which nullified a first down by Grooms. Bobby Joe cut loose, however, dashed through a hole, wheeled to the left and outraced everyone for the touchdown which proved to be the Tigers’ last.

The local team came out of the game in good condition with the exception of Dave Gable, who sustained a shoulder separation early in the contest. He was treated at the Massillon city hospital.

The line-up and summary:
ENDS – Keen, Shilling, Gable, Brenner, Sweasey, Climo, Tasseff.
TACKLES – Geiser, Rubio, Gibson, Strobel, Takacs, Kraus, Younkers.
GUARDS – Sapia, Stewart, Tunning, Grunder, Snyder, Moyer.
CENTERS – Fabian, Roderick.
QUARTERBACKS – P. Francisco, Dommer. R. Johnson.
HALFBACKS – Longshore, Khoenle, Traylor, Grier, Straughn, Williams, Nussbaum, Bob Johnson.
FULLBACKS – Grooms, Vliet.

ENDS – Gelal, Sheeler, Carter.
TACKLES – Barber, Ruble, Baren, Cole, Posey.
GUARDS – Fach, Umbles, Wilds.
CENTERS – Noel, Chezzi, Edwards.
QUARTERBACKS – Ramsayer, Albert.
HALFBACKS – Goodrich, Howard, Good.
FULLBACKS – Burke, DeYarman, Bedmarczyk.

Score by periods:
Massillon 7 7 20 6 40

Massillon – Grooms 2; Grier 2; Straughn; Bob Johnson.

Points after touchdown:
Massillon – Grooms 4 (placekicks).

Referee – Rupp.
Umpire – Tobin.
Field Judge – Smith

Mass. Canton
First downs 18 5
Passes attempted 12 3
Passes completed 1 1
Had passes intercepted 1 0
Yards gained passing 18 3
Yards gained rushing 461 129
Total yards gained 479 132
Yards lost 3 40
Net yards gained 476 92
Times kicked off 7 1
Average kickoff (yards) 42 30
Yards kickoffs returned by 2 98
Times punted 0 8
Had punts blocked 0 1
Average punt (yards) 0 25
Yards punts returned by 18 0
Times fumbled 2 3
Lost ball on fumbles 0 2
Times penalized 7 3
Yards penalized 55 21

Individual Massillon
Player Times Yards Yards Net
Carried Gained Lost Gained
Paul Francisco 1 3 0 3
Bob Grier 19 111 3 108
Tom Straughn 12 65 0 65
Henry Grooms 20 215 0 215
Lee Nussbaum 4 26 0 26
Bob Johnson 2 41 0 41

Individual McKinley
George Ramsayer 2 0 15 -15
John Goodrich 12 60 0 60
Otis Howard 12 40 23 17
Pat Burke 12 29 2 27

Ace Grooms